High Blood Pressure: Here's how the humble tomato can have a positive impact on BP

High blood pressure aka Hypertension is one of the common health issues. Millions of people across the world are suffering from it and the number is only rising. The same can be life-threatening as it can lead other ailments related to heart, brain, kidney, and eyes among others.
High Blood Pressure: Here's how the humble tomato can have a positive impact on BPHigh Blood Pressure: Here's how the humble tomato can have a positive impact on BP
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High blood pressure aka Hypertension is one of the common health issues. Millions of people across the world are suffering from it and the number is only rising. Did you know one in three in India, suffer from the disorder?  The same can be life-threatening as it can lead other ailments related to heart, brain, kidney, and eyes among others.  It is also known as a silent killer as it rarely shows symptoms and that's why the best way to know if you are suffering from high BP is checking regularly either by a GP or pharmacist. Aside from medication, simple lifestyle changes can help you to prevent and reduce the high BP levels.

Physical activities, lowering the intake of sodium-rich food items, increasing the consumption of potassium-rich food items, maintaining a healthy weight, abstaining from alcohol and cigarettes are some of the common changes recommended. Generally, fruits and veggies are recommended but there are certain superfoods such as bananas, beets, berries, dark chocolate, cinnamon, garlic and flaxseeds among others should be incorporated in your diet if you want lower high blood pressure.

Speaking of one of the superfoods, tomatoes are one food item that you should eat on a daily basis to bring down elevated levels of blood pressure. Tomatoes are loaded with many nutrients. Dr. Nicole Weinberg, a cardiologist at Providence Saint John’s Health Center in Santa Monica, California, “Like with many vegetables, tomato juice is rich in vitamins and minerals. It is high in vitamin C and B, as well as potassium.”

When it comes to high BP, tomatoes have a nutrient called lycopene and the same has many health benefits including lowering BP. Lycopene, which is a type of carotenoid, has a strong antioxidant activity and the same help to prevent cancer. The best part about tomatoes is that they are very versatile and can be added in any meal anytime. As per a study which was conducted by Japanese researchers, showed how participants' LDL (bad) cholesterol were lowered after the intake of tomatoes.

The researchers from Tokyo Medical and Dental University and Tucson Plant Breeding Institute conducted the study over 184 males and 297 females. They were asked to drink as much as unsalted tomato juice over a year. They were also asked to record their intake as well asked to send the data to doctors every three months. 

At the end of the study, they found that 94 of the participants, who had untreated prehypertension or hypertension showed a dip in their blood pressure. 

Participants average systolic pressure dropped from 141.2 to 137.0mmHg and the average diastolic blood pressure was also recorded and it also dipped from 83.3 to 80.9mmHg.

Stella Metsovas, a clinical nutritionist and author of Wild Mediterranean said, "I would strongly recommend if you sip on unsalted tomato juice for the cardioprotective health benefits, you might want to add a teaspoon of cold-pressed extra-virgin olive oil since research has also showcased that phytonutrient-rich foods are best absorbed with healthy fats, such as olive oil."

Apart from tomato juice, beetroot juice is also very helpful to reduce both systolic and diastolic blood pressure. Aside from a healthy diet, make sure you also indulge in moderate to high-intensity workout as well for around 150 minutes every week.

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