Basics

A Sample Diet Plan for Lowering Blood Pressure

High blood pressure has become the most notorious medical condition to affect the lives of people. Apart from certain biological factors, the main causes of this condition are rooted in the way we eat and lead our lives. Use the following diet plan chart to formulate a blood pressure lowering diet for yourself.

The Diet Plan:

The element sodium plays an important role in raising our blood pressure. Its consumption is beneficial only when it is below 2400 milligrams a day. The usual consumption of an average American adult exceeds this limit by at least a 100 per cent. It reaches into the body not only through the table salt which we eat but also through processed and packaged foods.

As far as meals are concerned, choose from the following groups to prepare breakfast, lunch and dinner. These (and other similar things) are low on sodium and would help you lower high blood pressure.

Breakfast:

* 1 cup oatmeal
* 2 slices of whole-wheat toast
* 1 tsp of low sodium margarine
* 1 cup skimmed milk
* 1 tsp of sugar
* 1/2 cup orange juice
* 1 medium Banana

Lunch:

* 1 cup Green salad with 2 tbsp low sodium dressing
* 1 1/2 cups spaghetti with low sodium marinara sauce
* 1 tsp low sodium margarine
* 1 slice Italian bread
* 1 cup grape juice
* 1 medium apple

Dinner:


* 3 oz grilled chicken breast
* 1whole wheat roll
* 1/2 cup pasta salad made with low sodium dressing
* 1/2 cup grilled zucchini
* 1 tsp low sodium margarine
* 1/2 cup skim milk
* 1/2 cup cranberry juice
* 1/2 cup peach cobbler

All these ingredients are low on sodium. They would limit your sodium content to your daily requirement. However, this would not take care of other ways through which you would consume sodium. These items are processed and packaged foods.

The amount of sodium present in packaged foods varies. You would get more information about the sodium content in the food through its packaging. While on most occasions the packaging may tell you explicitly the amount of sodium present, on other occasions you need to interpret the data given. Take help from the following:

1.    If the packet states "salt-free", it means that there is 5 milligrams or less of sodium per serving.
2.    If the packet states "very low sodium", it means that there is 35 milligrams or less of sodium per serving.
3.     When the packet states "low sodium", it means that there is 140 milligrams or less of sodium per serving.

The packaging on foods which claim to be low on sodium than they otherwise are can be interpreted as follows:

1.    Packet stating "reduced sodium" means that the food has at least 25% less sodium than the original version of the food.
2.    When a packet states "light in sodium", it means that the food has at least 50% less sodium than the original version of the food.