The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - Body and Soul - - The Gp & The Naturopath -

in re­duc­ing blood pres­sure is diet. Di­etary risk fac­tors for high blood pres­sure in­clude be­ing obese and hav­ing a diet with a high sodium-to-po­tas­sium ra­tio or one that is low in fi­bre and high in su­gar and sat­u­rated fats. A low in­take of omega-3 fatty acids, cal­cium, mag­ne­sium and vi­ta­min C can also lead to high blood pres­sure, as can ex­ces­sive caf­feine in­take. The di­etary fac­tor that has re­ceived the most at­ten­tion is salt in­take. Be­tween 40 and 60 per cent of peo­ple with high blood pres­sure are sen­si­tive to salt. Re­search sug­gests they should re­duce their salt in­take to less than two grams a day. As well as re­duc­ing the amount of salt you add to food, watch out for sodium in most pack­aged foods and many fresh foods such as breads and cakes. It is also found nat­u­rally in some foods. Life­style strate­gies such as ex­er­cise and weight man­age­ment help to re­duce blood pres­sure. Some peo­ple ex­pe­ri­ence an in­crease in blood pres­sure when they feel stressed. Re­lax­ation tech­niques and stress man­age­ment can help. Mag­ne­sium, vi­ta­min E, es­sen­tial fatty acids and coen­zyme Q10 sup­ple­ments have all been shown to re­duce blood pres­sure. It is de­pen­dent on the dose, though, so have a thor­ough re­view with a health pro­fes­sional.

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