If you live with high blood pressure and a steady diet of all kinds of hypertension medicines, you have to know that you live under the cloud of a possible heart attack, kidney failure or stroke one day. Is it at all possible that there are certain kinds of foods that you could work into your diet that could be as good at preventing these complications as medicines are? That's what the American Journal of Clinical Nnutrition talks about - in the new study they have just published - work all kinds of refined foods out of your diet and replace them with whole-grain foods, and the fearsome complications that come from living life with high blood pressure, practically disappear. It might seem simple enough - just eat more of the foods that lower blood pressure complications, and free your mind of a terrible source of anxiety.
Of course, it doesn't really workout to be that simple. If you live in a large city in America, you are easily exposed to the tasteless refined foods the most. You can't just walk up to a restaurant of any description and expect that their best recipes are made of whole grain rice, whole grain pasta or quinoa. For some reason, every restaurant chef, every manufacturer of mass market snack foods, prefers refined flour to whole grain - stuff that's white, soft and completely absent of nutrition. They prefer grains that are polished to have all their vitamins, their bran, their germ - anything that could be good for you, completely removed.
So how do we know that whole grains are foods that lower blood pressure problems with time? There has been a study done in Scotland that has tried to measure the actual benefits present in whole-grain foods. It was a small study on about a couple of hundred subjects, divided into two groups. The group that was served whole-grain foods three times a day, had its collective blood pressure drop about six points on a standard blood pressure test. If that doesn't sound like much, consider this - a five point drop in your systolic blood pressure turns out putting you at a 25% lower risk of a stroke. It's the kind of blood pressure drop that you would experience if you took an additional hypertension drug.
Not only do whole grain foods lower pressure once you begin to go down the path of high blood pressure, they can even prevent hypertension before you actually get it. And that's when you eat as little as a single serving a day. The more you eat of course, the better it is. If you are someone who has hypertension running in the family or if you find that you are on the very borderline of becoming hypertensive yourself, throwing out every article of refined food in your life and replacing it with whole-grain foods should be the way to go. Make sure that your morning cereal is whole-grain; put up with the texture and taste of brown rice or quinoa instead of white rice; make sure that your bread is truly whole wheat. You'll end up feeling a whole lot better.