High blood pressure (also known as hypertension) is extremely common among Americans. In fact, 1 out of every 3 Americans suffers from high blood pressure and nearly half of those that have high blood pressure don’t have it under control. It can affect all areas of the body, even the feet! Those who suffer from high blood pressure have an incased risk of getting ulcers on their legs and feet due to poor circulation, and if those ulcers aren’t treated they can lead to infections in other parts of the body and if severe enough they can lead to amputation.
Now, there are many ways to control your hypertension, such as medications, exercise, and watching what you eat. There are plenty of foods that you should steer clear of if you have high blood pressure. Most importantly, stay away from those that are high in fat and sodium. Here are just a few foods that contain high amounts of sodium, fat, or both.
- Pickles: Although pickles are a low calorie food, they pack about 1/3 of your daily intake of sodium!
- Canned Chicken Noodle Soup: This stuff is full of sodium. Try a homemade version or go for the lower sodium variety, and eat it sparingly.
- Donuts: We love them, but just one donut contains around 200 calories and 12 grams of fat. Think about a toasted whole wheat bagel instead which will keep you fuller longer and doesn’t contain nearly the same amount of fat and sugar that a donut does.
- Whole Milk: Just one cup of whole milk contains 8 grams of fat, 5 of which are saturated fats (saturated fats have been linked to heart disease). It may take some time making the switch from whole to skim or even to 1%, but after a while you won’t even notice a difference in taste. Ok, maybe a little, but your health is much more important.
- Bacon: Who doesn’t love bacon? Well, it’s no surprise that bacon isn’t the healthiest food for you. Three slices contains about 4.5 grams of fat and around 270 mg of sodium. You can still have your bacon once in a while, but try out the lower sodium and turkey bacon varieties.
We are surrounded by unhealthy foods that are full of saturated fats and sodium, so make sure you are checking the labels of your favorite foods. Your heart health is so much more important than eating your favorite salty and fatty foods all the time.
Dr. Even Merrill has many years of experience treating foot problems due to high blood pressure. Come check out our office at Southern Oregon Foot & Ankle LLC. If you are in need of an appointment contact call 541-776-3338 or make an appointment online.