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High blood pressure: Three easy diet plans to help lower your blood pressure

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High blood pressure can be serious, because if left untreated it can cause health complications like heart attacks and strokes.

There are many risk factors for high blood pressure, one of which is following a poor diet and eating too much salt.

Avoiding certain foods and including others in your diet can therefore reduce blood pressure when it is too high.

However, it can be difficult to know which foods to incorporate into your diet.

“If you have high blood pressure, you may have been told to get antioxidants, omega 3, fibre, nitrates, vitamin C and other nutrients important for vascular health into your diet,” said Mary Cotter, nutritional therapist at Nuffield Health.

These are three pressure-lowering eating plans Cotter recommends building into your week.

Plan one

Breakfast: porridge with berries, walnuts and ground flaxseeds.

Mid-morning snack: pomegranate and plain natural yoghurt topped with pumpkin seeds.

Lunch: chicken and beetroot salad with ready-to-eat quinoa, sprinkled with sesame and pumpkin seeds.

Afternoon snack: a handful of raw cashews.

Dinner: baked trout served with cabbage stir-fried in ginger, garlic, and sesame seeds with brown rice.

Plan two

Breakfast: spinach and tomato omelette.

Mid-morning snack: a handful of raw walnuts.

Lunch: chickpea, sweet potato and kale soup served with oatcakes instead of bread.

Afternoon snack: four celery sticks and one tablespoon of hummus.

Dinner: oven-roasted salmon served with roasted beetroot, Brussels sprouts, garlic and onions. Season with dried herbs and olive oil instead of salt.

Plan three

Breakfast: plain natural yoghurt with cinnamon, berries, ground flaxseeds and chopped nuts.

Mid-morning snack: two oatcakes with cashew nut butter.

Lunch: lentil and vegetable soup with oatcakes instead of bread.

Afternoon snack: celery or carrot sticks dipped in plain cottage cheese.

Dinner: cauliflower and chickpea curry with brown rice.

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