High blood pressure is a common condition that affects more than a quarter of all adults in the UK. The condition, which is also known as hypertension, puts extra stress on your blood vessels and vital organs. You could be at risk of high blood pressure if you eat an unhealthy diet, or if you don’t do enough exercise. But regularly eating potatoes could help to lower your chances of developing hypertension, it’s been claimed.
Potatoes could reduce your blood pressure as they’re rich in magnesium and potassium, according to nutritionist Joy Bauer.
Potassium-rich foods help to protect against the negative effects of sodium.
Magnesium, meanwhile, is needed to regulate blood flow throughout the body, she added.
“Baked white potatoes are rich in both magnesium and potassium, two vital nutrients for heart health.
“When potassium is low, the body retains extra sodium [and too much sodium raises blood pressure].
“On the other hand, when you eat a potassium-rich diet, the body becomes more efficient at getting rid of excess sodium.
“Like potassium, magnesium is also a key player in promoting healthy blood flow.
“Therefore, maintaining a healthy balance of both minerals can help keep high blood pressure at bay.”
Other potassium-rich foods include bananas, apricots, and currants. But, it’s still important to cut back on the amount of salt in your diet.
Everyone should avoid eating more than 6g of salt in a single day – the equivalent to about a teaspoonful. The more salt you eat, the higher your blood pressure.
A low-fat diet that includes lots of fibre, fruit and vegetables is the best way to avoid hypertension.
High blood pressure is often known as ‘the silent killer’, because symptoms only tend to reveal themselves if you have extremely high blood pressure.
The most common high blood pressure symptoms include a pounding in your chest, finding blood in your urine, and severe headaches.
It’s crucial that all adults over 40 years old check their blood pressure at least once every five years.
You can check your blood pressure by visiting your local doctors’ surgery or pharmacy.
Diagnosing the condition early is very important, because patients are more at risk of some deadly complications, including heart attacks and strokes.