High blood pressure, known as hypertension, affects more than 5.5 million people in England who don’t even know they have the condition according to GOV.UK. Blood pressure is measured in millimetres of mercury and recorded as either the systolic blood pressure – the highest pressure in blood vessels and the diastolic – the lowest pressure in the blood vessels. A normal reading is 90/60mmHg and 120/80mmHg, and for those who have readings higher than this, extra vigilance is needed when it comes to diet and lifestyle. There is one food item that could help lower your readings.
Yogurt is high in protein, calcium, vitamins and probiotics. It offers protection for bones, teeth and helps prevent digestive problems.
It is believed that yogurt was made in Turkey all the way back in the 6th century by accident.
The discovery was a result of milk being stored in warm climates and it wasn’t long before word of the perceived health benefits of yogurt traveled through to other countries, with the consumption spread throughout the East.
Studies have shown that people who consumed five or more servings of yogurt a week have a lower risk of developing high blood pressure, especially in women.
The study published in the American Journal of Hypertension followed the health of 55,000 women and 18,000 men with high blood pressure.
It was found that those who ate at least two servings of yogurt per week experienced a 20 percent lower risk of stroke or developing major coronary heart disease.
The risk for heart attack was 30 percent less for woman and 19 percent less for men.
Doctor Justin Buendia from Boston University School of Medicine said: “No one food is a magic bullet but adding yogurt to an otherwise healthy diet seems to help reduce the long-term risk of high blood pressure.”
The beauty of yogurt is that it could be used in sweet or savoury dishes, with many different cultures embracing the food item in their favourite dishes such as chicken korma, greek tzatziki, Turkish ayran or Lebanese labneh.
Other recipes using yogurt:
- Steak with cumin-lime yogurt and cauliflower salad
- Blackberry yogurt pops
- Yogurt parfait with crumbled gingersnaps and honey
- Roasted chicken with couscous and yogurt sauce
- Spiced beef kebabs with yogurt
- Burgers with miso yogurt
Symptoms to look out for of high blood pressure include:
- Nose bleeds
- Heart palpitations
- Stomach pain
- Chest pain
The NHS said: “Other methods to improve blood pressure include quitting smoking, sticking to the recommended levels of alcohol consumption, eating a healthy diet in particular eating lower salt and taking regular exercise.”