Foods, Health and Disease, Uncategorized

Lower Your Blood Pressure With The Foods You Eat

6 Foods That Lower Blood Pressure

 

Over 70 million Americans suffer from high blood pressure and 30 percent of Americans have prehypertension, making this condition extremely crucial to control. However, sometimes prescription drugs used to control hypertension can have potentially dangerous side effects.

a medical technician takes a patient's blood pressure

With the recent recall of several blood pressure drugs due to potential contamination, it’s more important than ever to try natural ways to keep blood pressure under control.

Here are six foods that can help control blood pressure:

 

  • Insoluble fiber. Dr. Oz says that eating foods like beans, 100 percent whole wheat or bran products, green beans, potatoes, cauliflower, or nuts helps balance the gut biome which in turn produces fatty acids that reduce cardiovascular problems such as blood pressure, irregular heart beat, and atherosclerosis. Insoluble fiber also adds bulk to stool and helps food pass more quickly through the stomach and intestines, protecting your heart from high blood pressure.
  • Leafy greens. According to Medical Daily, the potassium found in leafy green vegetables eliminates sodium from the body which in turn can reduce blood pressure. Kale and spinach are options that provide a good portion of your daily recommended intake. The Environmental Working Group recommends that you consume organic greens due the high levels of pesticide residues in commercially grown veggies.
  • Berries. Berries, and specifically blueberries, contain nitric acid which can have protective effects on heart health. “There’s something very special about the composition of blueberries that is responsible for their effect on blood pressure,” Florida State researcher Sarah A. Johnson told The New York Times. “Other fruits and plant extracts have not produced the same results.”
  • Olive oil. The most popular heart-healthy diets are the DASH and the Mediterranean both of which recommend using olive oil in your diet. The benefits may be attributed to the polyphenols as well as the monounsaturated fats. These “good” fats make a fine replacement for butter which contains unhealthy fat. Studies show that women, in particular, experience the greatest health benefits from using olive oil.
  • Salmon. The American Heart Association recommends consuming fatty fish twice weekly. Studies have found that high omega-3 content may play a role in lowering blood pressure and targeting inflammation in the body. Prevention also notes that salmon contains vitamin D which “helps the body absorb calcium, protects against depression, and regulates blood pressure,” according to their website.
  • Chocolate. As long as you stick to dark chocolate and watch the portion size, you can enjoy a number of health benefits. The dark variety contains compounds called flavanols which experts believe have beneficial effects on blood pressure, cholesterol levels, cognition, and more. To avoid weight gain, limit your consumption to an ounce daily and make sure your chocolate contains at least 70 percent cocoa.

You Are What You Eat, So dont be Cheap, Easy or Fake

 

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Foods, Uncategorized

Eat Dark Chocolate and Olive Oil Together!

choc

Those with a high cardiovascular risk profile should eat dark chocolate with olive oil, new study finds

 

In recent years, the medical community has put a lot of effort into educating people about reducing their cholesterol levels in order to protect their heart health. Of course, those who do have elevated cholesterol levels are often prescribed statin drugs like Lipitor, Zocor and others to lower these levels. In fact, these are among the most prescribed drugs of all time.

 

Nonetheless, these toxic drugs carry serious side effects, including muscle pain and weakness, increased liver enzymes, asthma complications, and birth defects in pregnant women, to name just a few.

 

This doesn’t mean, though, that there isn’t a healthy solution to reducing cholesterol levels naturally. In addition to maintaining a healthy weight and exercising regularly, a recent study has unlocked another key to taking care of your heart: eating dark chocolate and extra virgin olive oil together.

 

The study, undertaken by researchers from the University of Pisa in Italy, who presented the results at the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) Congress in August, concluded that dark chocolate enriched with extra virgin olive oil can lead to improved heart health and a better cardiovascular risk profile.

 

“A healthy diet is known to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease,” said Dr. Rossella Di Stefano, a cardiologist at the University of Pisa, and the lead author of the study. “Fruits and vegetables exert their protective effects through plant polyphenols, which are found in cocoa, olive oil, and apples. Research has found that the Italian Panaia red apple has very high levels of polyphenols and antioxidants.”

 

The researchers set out to determine whether a combination of either dark chocolate and olive oil or dark chocolate and Panaia red apple might halt the progress of atherosclerosis (a build-up of plaque on the artery walls, causing obstructed blood flow, and potentially a life-threatening blood clot) in otherwise healthy people with cardiovascular risk factors.

 

The ESC explained in a press release:

 

The randomised crossover study included 26 volunteers (14 men, 12 women) with at least three cardiovascular risk factors (smoking, dyslipidaemia, hypertension, or family history of cardiovascular disease) who received 40 grams of dark chocolate daily for 28 days. For 14 consecutive days it contained 10% extra virgin olive oil and for 14 consecutive days it contained 2.5% Panaia red apple. The two types of chocolate were given in random order.

 

Progression of atherosclerosis was assessed by metabolic changes (levels of carnitine and hippurate), lipid profile, blood pressure and levels of circulating endothelial progenitor cells (EPCs). EPCs are critical for vascular repair and maintenance of endothelial function.

 

The researchers took urine and blood samples at the beginning of the study and again at the end. The urine samples were analyzed for endogenous metabolites using proton nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, and circulating EPC levels were evaluated with flow cytometry. Body mass index (BMI), blood pressure levels, smoking status, lipid profile and glycaemia, were also carefully monitored for all participants.

 

The results were quite astounding. At the end of the 28-day study, the researchers found that EPC levels were significantly increased after consumption of the olive oil-enriched chocolate. Carnitine and hippurate levels were considerably decreased – which is a good thing – both in comparison to baseline figures and to the apple-enriched chocolate.

 

Most encouragingly, consumption of the olive oil-enhanced chocolate resulted in significant increases in high-density lipoprotein (good cholesterol) and sizable reductions in blood pressure levels. (Related: Olive oil antioxidant naturally kills all cancer cells tested within an hour.)

 

So, if like millions of others you’ve been advised to take steps to decrease your cholesterol levels, you now have a fantastic excuse to increase your consumption of delicious dark chocolate. Just make sure you take some pure virgin olive oil with it! Perhaps melt that chocolate in a little olive oil and pour over fresh strawberries? Yum

 

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Foods, Uncategorized

Crunchy Kale Salad with Walnuts and Pecorino

kalesalad

Crunchy Kale Salad with Walnuts and Pecorino

 

 

Ingredients

 

4 cups finely julienne kale, cleaned and stems removed

2 cups finely julienne radicchio, cleaned and core removed

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1 lemon, juiced and 1 teaspoon zest

1/2 cup shaved Pecorino Romano, plus extra for garnish

1/4 cup dried currants

2 tablespoons finely sliced fresh basil

Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper

1/2 cup toasted walnuts

 

Directions

 

Toss the kale and radicchio with about half of the oil, lemon juice and zest in a large glass mixing bowl. Let stand about 2 minutes. Add the Pecorino, currants, basil and the remaining oil, lemon juice and zest. Thoroughly mix. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.

 

Fold in the walnuts just before serving and top the salad with a pile of Pecorino.

 

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Diets and Weight Loss, Lifestyle

3 Healthy Food Lies Reveal Why Your Kitchen is Full of Fat Storing Ingredients

fatchef

3 Healthy Food LIES Reveal Why Your Kitchen Is Full Of “Fat Storing” Ingredients…

Picture the foods that are in your fridge at this very moment.

Did you know that almost every single one of these foods contain “hidden” fat-storing ingredients that can slow down your metabolism, sap your energy, and block your fat burning potential by a whopping 82% – even the ones you think are “healthy”?

Did you know that there’s a super simple way to rid your life of these “fattening” foods and SWAP them with delicious foods that BOOST your metabolism and dramatically accelerate your fat loss?

Step #1: STOP Trusting Food Labels (They’re NOT trustworthy)

Everyone believes reading labels is a good way to determine if a food is healthy or not – but that’s only partially true.

To make more money from uneducated consumers, most food manufacturers use dirty little tricks to hide dangerous and fattening ingredients in common foods that you eat everyday. And worst of all, these fake ingredients are specifically designed to make you ADDICTED to their stuff.

One of many examples is “trans fats”. If you don’t know by now, this is one of the most dangerous foods in existence.

Eating just a tiny amount of this nasty ingredient can increase your risk of heart disease and promote accumulation of visceral fat – a dangerous kind of belly fat that’s almost impossible to get rid of.

Well, believe it or not, MANY of the foods that show “Zero Trans Fat” on the label actually contain a TON of it.

Thanks to the FDA, manufacturers are allowed to label ANY food, even so-called “healthy” ones, with less than .5g of trans fat per serving as “Trans Fat-Free”. Almost every manufacturer lowers their portion sizes on the labels to hide their claims on their products while filling them with this dangerous and fattening ingredient.

Here’s a powerful, eye-opening example. When you eat just ONE handful of “Zero Trans Fat” crackers you poison your body with a couple grams of toxic, fat-storing trans fat – WITHOUT even being aware of it.

But wait. It gets even worse. There’s one common food in particular that’s probably in your pantry, right now, and it contains loads of trans fat that don’t appear ANYWHERE on the label.

That’s right. NOT on the ingredients list, NOT in the nutrition facts, and not even on your favorite Internet food database. Nowhere.

Very few people know this, but vegetable oil (made from fat-storing corn, soybeans or canola) has to go through an extreme 5-step processing method before it ends up on your supermarket shelves.

This high pressure, high temperature process destroys all the “heart-friendly” fats originally contained in the oil and transforms it into dangerous trans fats.

According to a shocking study by the University of Florida at Gainesville, your vegetable oil can contain up to 4.6% hidden trans fat that’s not on the label. Kind of scary, I know.

Step #2: STOP Avoiding Saturated Fats (You’ve been lied to)

The media, doctors and the big food industry spend millions of dollars every year trying to convince all of us that red meat is “fattening” and why you should avoid it if you want to lose belly fat. After all, it does contain a lot of dangerous saturated fats – right?

Don’t fall for it. It’s just another nutrition myth that prevents you from eating some of the BEST fat burning foods on the planet.

In fact, the RIGHT kind of saturated fat is actually good for you and can even help you lose belly fat. Recent studies actually prove that saturated fat REDUCES your risk of heart disease and supports weight loss.(Reference: Ann Intern Med. 2005 Mar 15;142(6):403-11)

That’s because “healthy” saturated fat sources like grass-fed beef and pasture-raised eggs contain a natural fat burner called CLA – plus a ton of other essential nutrients that can BOOST your metabolism and accelerate your fat burning.

But if you continue listening to all the nonsense and false information everybody tells you about this “friendly” fat-burning fat, you’ll be missing out on one of the most powerful fat-burning foods you could ever eat.

Step #3: STOP Using Fake “Health” Foods (They’re in your kitchen right now)

If the first two reasons didn’t surprise you, this one surely will.

Thanks to the relentless greed of most food manufacturers, that obviously could care less about your health,some of the healthiest foods in your kitchen may be fake.

Here’s proof.

In 2010, Consumer Reports – one of the most credible non-profit organizations fighting for consumer rights in the US – revealed that around 20% of ALL olive oils are fake and have been mixed with other cheap oils, while still claiming they are 100% pure.

This food hoax was uncovered once again in 2012, when the UC Davis Olive Center found out that only 27% of all olive oils passed the quality test to be labeled “extra virgin” – the best and most nutritious kind of olive oil there is.

So the olive oil you have in your kitchen RIGHT NOW might contain up to 100% vegetable oil, even though the label “says” it’s healthy. And don’t forget, vegetable oils are LOADED with dangerous, fat-storing trans-fat.  You can find articles on our Health and Wellness facebook page, and our sister page HWellness.assoc about this problem.

You can go ahead and TRY to find a manufacturer who actually cares and delivers a legitimate olive oil to support your weight loss goals, but it’s a crapshoot.

If you are having a hard time loosing weight, or you want the best for your families, then schedule an appt with us, and we will help you through this.

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived Article

Nick Pineault

312-972-WELL