The benefits of a Vegetarian Diet, which is centered around plant-based foods, have been growing in popularity in recent years as more people are seeking healthier, more sustainable, and environmentally friendly eating habits. A well-planned vegetarian diet can provide numerous health benefits, including reduced risk of chronic diseases, improved weight management, and enhanced overall health and wellness. In this article, we will delve into the benefits of a vegetarian diet and the reasons why it has become such a popular choice for so many people. Whether you are a long-time vegetarian or simply looking to incorporate more plant-based foods into your diet, this article is a must-read.
Benefits for Hypertension
Hypertension, aka high blood pressure that exceeds the normal threshold, can cause various health complications, ranging from strokes, and heart attacks, to kidney failure. To prevent this, a vegetarian diet can be an option.
According to research published in the Journal of Hypertension, a vegetarian diet is useful for helping control blood pressure.
Other research says that vegetarian dieters have blood pressure two times lower than those who eat meat. The benefits of diet for hypertension can also reduce the amount of sodium and saturated fat that enters the body so that it can ease the work of the heart.
Tips for Hypertension Sufferers
If you suffer from hypertension, a vegetarian diet can be tried to help control blood pressure. So, for optimal benefits, do several tips below.
1. Always Record What You Eat
Oftentimes, you are not aware of the food consumed throughout the day. You may unwittingly consume a lot of calories in one meal. As a result, uncontrolled body weight and blood pressure also rose.
Instead, record the food you consume every day, including how many portions you eat. That way, you can estimate how many calories are in.
2. Choose High Fiber Foods
To meet fiber needs, make sure you eat enough fruits and vegetables every day. Consume at least 580 grams of vegetables and fruit every day. You can also process it into smoothies or salads.
Apart from fruits and vegetables, you can get fiber from other food sources, such as oats, brown rice, brown rice, and nuts.
3. Consumption of Carbohydrate Sources
Balance your vegetarian diet by consuming carbohydrate sources, such as rice, wheat, potatoes, cereals, and pasta.
Apart from acting as a source of energy, carbohydrate foods contain fiber, iron, calcium, and B vitamins that the body needs.
4. Choose Good Fats
Not all fat intake is bad. Good fats are still needed by the body. Good fat intake can be obtained from avocados, olive oil, or canola oil.
Olive or canola oil can even be mixed in moderation in salads or used to cook food.
5. Look for Alternatives to Cow’s Milk Products
Calcium intake is usually met by consuming milk and its derivative products, such as cheese and yogurt. However, for those of you who follow a vegetarian diet, calcium intake can be obtained through other alternatives.
Calcium needs can be met by consuming soy milk, almond milk, or fortified oat milk. To be healthier, you can choose low-sugar or no-sugar dairy products.
6. Watch the Use of Salt
To get the benefits of a vegetarian diet in dealing with high blood pressure, try not to add too much salt to your food.
For those of you with hypertension, it is recommended not to consume more than 1,500 mg of salt every day.
Is It Enough to Just Do?
One of the benefits of a vegetarian diet is that it helps lower blood pressure. However, a vegetarian diet alone is not enough.
It is also necessary to implement other healthy lifestyles to help control hypertension outside of drug consumption and pay attention to the food consumed.
So, what does a healthy lifestyle mean?
1. Increasing Physical Activity
Increasing physical activity will help lower blood pressure, lose weight, reduce stress, and strengthen the work of the heart and blood vessels.
To be more optimal in dealing with hypertension, vegetarian dieters are advised to do physical activity for at least 30 minutes, 5 times a week.
2. Avoid Cigarettes and Alcohol
The habit of smoking and drinking alcohol can cause interference with the work of the heart. This can eventually cause high blood pressure to get out of control.
Apart from adopting a vegetarian diet, you also need to avoid smoking and alcohol if you want to lower your blood pressure to a normal range.
3. Manage Stress Well
Another healthy lifestyle that is also important for lowering blood pressure is managing stress well. The reason is, stress can interfere with the condition of the body as a whole.
If it occurs continuously, stress can interfere with heart function and increase blood pressure quickly.
There are several ways you can do to manage stress so it doesn’t keep happening, for example by doing hobbies, meditating, or recreation.
Vegetarian diets are proven to be efficacious for maintaining heart health, so they can help control hypertension so it doesn’t lead to complications.
However, you cannot fully experience the benefits of a vegetarian diet without adopting a healthy lifestyle. If you want to maintain your health, combine a vegetarian diet with a healthy lifestyle!