Medhelp’s Advice

Information seems to jump onto my screen when I’m not even looking for it.  For example, Medhelp (http://www.medhelp.org) periodically sends me e-mails.  Recently, I wasn’t happy with still having high blood pressure after all these years even though it’s controlled. Bang!  Medhelp sent me an e-mail about the worst and best foods to eat when you have high blood pressure.

While most of this information is already in my renal diet arsenal, there were a few items I didn’t know about since I was following the renal diet, not one for high blood pressure.  Just goes to show that you learn something new every day.

As to Medhelp’s advice: among the drinks to avoid are soft drinks – even low-calorie ones, iced tea, and fruit punch. I stick to filtered water and coffee so it made no difference to me, but you might be drinking these.

From following the renal diet, we already know to avoid packaged and processed meat products, bacon, sausage, bologna and hot dogs. Doing so will also help prevent your high blood pressure from raising further.  I ate a hot dog just the other day (basically I just gave in to that old devil peer pressure) and was both surprised and delighted that I no longer had a taste for them.  Just as with the renal diet, your tastes will change as you get used to eating only the foods on your specific diet.

For those who drink, binge drinking can raise your blood pressure.  That one was news to me, but I decided it made sense.  You have to decide for yourself.  I don’t drink, so this is like judging new places as an armchair traveler.

Refrigerated biscuits and crescent rolls made the no-no list too since they contain trans fat which is “associated with the risk of high blood pressure in middle-aged and older women.” In general, foods containing hydrogenated oil in the ingredients list should be avoided since that indicates they contain some trans fat, even if it’s not listed on the label.

There is a controversy as to whether or not coffee raises blood pressure.  I, for one, am not giving up my 16 ounces of caffeine a day until this is proven.  I’m careful about my eating, but I’m human!  I love my coffee.

I don’t know if it’s possible to get or make a low sodium pizza (any info on this, anyone?), but pizza as we know it can really raise your blood pressure due to the excessive amounts of sodium in it.

What foods are good for hindering high blood pressure?  Fruits and vegetables since they’re packed with potassium, but be careful.  You know as Chronic Kidney Disease patients you need to watch those potassium levels.  And continue to avoid star fruit which can be toxic to us.

Also using herbs and spices instead of salt, another tactic we already employ since we have CKD.  Again,  be careful about which ones you choose.  You don’t want to hinder high blood pressure at the cost of more kidney damage.

Stick to low-fat dairy products, not that we have a lot of choice in dairy products as CKD patients, to aid in hindering high blood pressure.

I’ve got to admit I found myself overwhelmed when I first received the renal diet three years ago, but eventually got the hang of it.  In January, I was given the latest update of that diet and am still trying to incorporate the changes into my diet.  I’m back to a lot of looking foods up on the list to see if they are now permissible or if they were the permissible ones which are now considered harmful to CKD patients.  When I looked at Medhelp’s suggestions to avoid increasing the high blood pressure I already have and some food suggestions for hindering high blood pressure, I was pleased to discover they only necessitated one or two changes to my already challenging dietary restrictions.

Take a good look at the suggestions.  Maybe there are one or two that will come easily to you.  Then take a look at the ones that “You know it don’t come easy.”  (thank you, Ringo Starr, for the right words at the right time)  and give them a try one at a time.

Enjoy your weekend and

keep living your life.

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Published in: on February 25, 2011 at 10:58 am  Comments (2)  

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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. hello, great blog site, and a really good understand! just one for my bookmarking.

    • Thank you, Dave. I tried accessing your web site and couldn’t get through to it. My aim here is to make the newly or recently diagnosed as comfortable as possible (under the circumstances).


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