Dr. C here.
Have you ever been told your blood pressure was too high? Based on your age and ethnicity, high blood pressure may be more common than safe blood pressure.
I’m mentioning it now because it is one of the larger risk factors for COVID-19 complications.
I’d love for you not to get sick, but the odds are that most of us will this year. The more we can do to get your risk factors under control, the better you will do.
If your blood pressure has been above 130/80 on multiple occasions, you are considered to be hypertensive.
Some people seem to only have high blood pressure when checked in the doctor’s office. This is so common it even has its own name: ‘white coat hypertension.’ In the past, it was thought that as long as your blood pressure is OK at home, the level that is read during a check-up does not matter. We now know that is not true. It turns out that if yours runs high in the doctor’s office, it probably runs high many other times a day whenever you feel a little uptight.
Salt restriction is helpful for some people but for many, it is not.
Having said that, most of us can use much less salt and do fine. What tastes salty to us is a function of how much salt you are used to. If you lower your salt intake, foods are bland for 1-2 days, then they taste fine. Some evidence has suggested that high sodium diets can be harmful to your blood vessels even if you do not get high blood pressure.
An idea gaining hold is that high blood pressure is a combination of too much sodium and too little potassium.
Whenever the word potassium comes up people think about bananas. They are great foods, but if you compare their potassium content to that of other types of produce, they are not all that special. Many vegetables and fruits are much higher.
One of the highest sources of potassium is the humble and maligned white potato. If you have thyroid disease, peel them to avoid any unusual amounts of iodine. Cook them at lower temperatures like boiling water so they preserve their resistant starch content.
Extra blood vessels
The largest single factor behind high blood pressure is extra blood vessels. Each pound of body fat has several miles of blood vessels. All those extra miles make the heart need to push harder and drive the blood pressure higher. What if you are lean but many pounds heavier than average – like a bodybuilder? The data is mixed, many pounds of extra muscle also means many more miles of blood vessels, but the overall risks for chronic disease are lower than they are in those with obesity.
There are also the chemical effects of extra fat that drive up blood pressure. Thankfully these negative effects can plummet with even a few pounds of weight loss.
If you’d like help with your blood pressure, you still have time to join us for the special free Metabolism Reset Challenge. Sign up here
To your best health,
Today’s recipe: Carrot Fries
Egg White Fried Rice
Sauteed Spinach with Tomatoes and Garlic
Shredded Chicken for a Week’s Worth of Meals
Egg (White) Drop Soup
Fast and Easy Chili
Easy Recipe Soba Tea
Lamb and Carrot Stew
Better Than “Cream of Mushroom” Chicken & Rice
Peas and Meat – Irish Comfort Food
Dr. C’s gift for figuring out what really works has helped hundreds of thousands of people reverse thyroid disease, lose weight, diabetes, and regain energy. Learn more about the surprising story that started his quest.