High blood pressure and cholesterol go hand in hand—one naturally causes the other. Lowering cholesterol will take a patient far in regulating blood pressure and making the body more efficient. Regulating blood pressure means that the heart does not have to work as hard to oxygenate the muscles, leading to easier nutrient absorption and greater overall health.
There are so many foods that contribute to lowered cholesterol and heart heath that it’s even more difficult not to eat heart-healthy. Adults tend to be lured by quantity. The quantities of foods are your greatest enemy; varying your diet and eating all kinds of foods in moderation go the farthest to regulate your body in multiple ways. Let’s look at some natural remedies for high blood pressure and cholesterol:
Oily fish are likely oily because of their omega-3 fatty acids. These acids can stimulate the body to produce its own cholesterol, cholesterol that fights and abolishes cholesterol ingested in foods with saturated fats. Omega-3 fatty acids are a healthy replacement to trans fats. Fatty fish include salmon, tuna, and sardines.
Regardless of their other components, all black teas include the shrub Camella sinensis. Besides the nutrients found in a wide variety of herbal remedies, black tea and this shrub have conclusively lowered cholesterol in its drinkers. Studies show that black tea reduces cholesterol in the blood and contributes vitamins and minerals that regulate blood pressure and calm the mind from within.
Garlic contains quercetin, the flavinol that gives garlic its potent flavor and helps garlic reduce cholesterol and regulate blood pressure simultaneously. Pressing and cooking garlic breaks down its components for easier digestion and absorption. The body can retain the chemicals found in garlic for many days—specifically within the skin.
Olive oil, like fish, comes with its own fatty acids. These burn fat and lower cholesterol; clearing cholesterol opens the arteries and stimulating strong blood flow. Olive oil should be used in moderation, but can be used in frying and cooking other cholesterol-fighting foods in small quantities.
Fibrous beans and other legumes both lower cholesterol and preoccupy the body. They take longer to digest, being complex sugar-filled, and thus slow the buildup of fat and cholesterol in small increments. Then, the body uses the fiber it absorbs to lower cholesterol already present in its system.
Oats, barley, bran and whole grains are as fibrous as beans and contribute to overall heart health in the same ways. Any foods with soluble fiber will preoccupy the body and allow the body to produce good cholesterol in place of bad, as well as prevent fat build up and rising blood pressure. Oats are particularly considered “heart healthy.”
The fatty acids and other nutrients found in nuts will lower cholesterol and clarify the blood over time. Nuts are also an excellent source of protein, vitamins and minerals. While nuts should not be the sole component of a balanced diet, adding chopped nuts, like walnuts, almonds or cashews, to many meals can give them the cholesterol-burning component you require.
The lutein found in spinach has many health benefits, including iron building and eye health, but also lowers cholesterol over time and regulates blood pressure. A very small portion of foods with lutein will burn cholesterol. Egg yolks also contain lutein, but proceed with caution—too many eggs in your diet will reverse the effect and contribute to high cholesterol.
Soy, like beans, is much more filling and slowly digestible, containing little fats of its own. Soy stimulates cholesterol burning without replacing the cholesterol. Soy is known for its heart health reputation, vital vitamins and minerals, and iron-deficiency treatments.
Eggplant, cucumber, okra, and any vegetable with starchy skins include enough fiber to make digestion burn cholesterol. When the body works harder to digest low fat foods, the body burns fat and sheds cholesterol without replacing the same bad fats. These vegetables make steamed mains and versatile side dishes.
Dark chocolate lowers bad cholesterol by stimulating good cholesterol growth in the body. Additionally, dark chocolate helps to regulate blood pressure by clarifying the blood with its many antioxidants. Clarified blood keeps arteries clear and keeps blood platelets from clogging the pathways. Try fruit-infused dark chocolate, like chocolate covered acai berries, for more antioxidants and a sweet kick.
Tempranillo red grapes, a common ingredient in red wine, lower cholesterol according to some scientific studies. They do not stimulate the growth of good cholesterol, but they help engage the body’s metabolism, burning fat and shedding bad cholesterol.
Citrus foods are highly acidic and contain large quantities of vitamins A and C and calcium. Citrus fruits also contain pectin, a type of fiber that helps burn bad cholesterol. The skins of oranges—and lemons, if you can tolerate the sour taste—are edible and highly fibrous.
Apples have long been considered heart healthy, for their low fats and high starches and fibers. They also contain pectin, contribute unrefined sugars and energy, and engage the body’s metabolism. Pears work in a similar fashion.
Bananas don’t seem very fibrous, but they actually come with as many soluble fibers as other fruits. Soluble fibers—while slow to digest and thus making you feel “fuller”—are still more easily digested by the body. They’re thick nutrients that burn cholesterol and fats before they permeate the bloodstream. Bananas are also a good source of alternative sweetener. Incorporate bananas and other sweet fruits into your meals, or snacks, for added heart health.
Many foods replace refined sugars and saturated fats with unprocessed sugars, good fatty acids and soluble fibers. These ingredients keep the body’s cycles working quickly and easily, without interruption. The goal is to, literally and figuratively, keep blood movement as smooth as possible. Lower blood pressure and less obstructing cholesterol will only help your muscles get the oxygen they need to burn more fats and absorb more nutrients. Out of all these options, which foods are your favorite for fighting high blood pressure and cholesterol?