Good Nutrition Advice

For a healthy body and mind

Tag: high blood pressure

nutrition advice

Health Benefits of Taking a Nap

Make like a Mediterranean and have a siesta, it could be great for your health.

A study presented at the European Society of Cardiology explores the benefits of taking a nap. The team of scientists led by Dr Kallistratos from Asklepieion Voula General Hospital in Athens monitored 386 participants (200 men and 186 women – average age 61.4 years old).

All of them had hypertension. The researchers recorded a number of things including sleep time, blood pressure, lifestyle habits, BMI (Body Mass Index) and echocardiographic measurements.

The results showed that sleeping for 60 minutes after a midday meal gave an average blood pressure reading (over 24 hours) that was 4mm of mercury lower and the participants’ blood pressure continued to drop by 2% and used less medication.

I know that it’s not realistic to imagine that everyone has the luxury of taking a nap for an hour after lunch, but if you’re able to do it at the weekend or on a day off, you should. Resting after lunch is also great for your digestion.

References: European Society of Cardiology

good nutrition advice

Calcium & Magnesium Reduce Metabolic Syndrome

good nutrition adviceCalcium and magnesium reduce metabolic syndrome.

With obesity on the rise, the risk of metabolic syndrome increases as the two are closely linked. A recent study published in the British Journal of Nutrition found calcium and magnesium could reduce the risk of metabolic syndrome.

The research carried out by Case Western Reserve University (U.S.) used data from 9,418 adults and found that women who were meeting the US Recommended Daily Allowances (RDA) for magnesium and calcium had a lower risk of metabolic syndrome. It was bad news for men, though, who appeared to need over the RDA for their risk to be lowered.

Metabolic syndrome is a group of characteristics that include fat around the middle, glucose intolerance and high blood pressure (hypertension). The syndrome is also associated with high levels of harmful fats in the blood linked to heart disease, cancers and type 2 diabetes.

Good food sources of magnesium include pulses, nuts, seeds, leafy vegetables and whole grains. Good food sources of calcium include white beans (cannellini), dried figs, kale, black-eyed peas, almonds and tofu. It is also worth taking a good quality supplement to support your diet.

References: Dietary intake of calcium and magnesium and the metabolic syndrome in the National Health and Nutrition Examination

Time To Get Rid of Tummy Fat

Time to get rid of tummy fat

Time to get rid of tummy fat

I hate to have to tell you this, but tummy fat really is toxic fat.

The fat around your middle manufactures an array of chemical messengers including blood-clotting agents, substances that contract blood vessels and raise blood pressure, inflammatory agents, hormones and molecules that control hunger.

Fat cells are also able to produce an immune response in the body, which causes inflammation. Fat cells also secrete oestrogen and two other compounds — tumour necrosis factor alpha and resistin — both of which interfere with the functioning of insulin.

Not all fat in the body behaves in the same way and it is the fat around the middle that is more metabolically active than fat elsewhere. It has been called “toxic fat” because it increases the risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, cancer, and diabetes.

Do you have a health challenge that you’d like to discuss with me? I offer online Naturopathic and Nutrition Consultations. Fill out my forms here to book your personal consultation with me.

Or if you don’t have any particular health issues, perhaps you’d prefer one of my off-the-shelf  Health Programmes? Choose from Colon Cleanse, Detox Programme, Ultimate Cleanse or my comprehensive Supplement Programme. All packages include a full consultation.

Thank you for reading!

Fiona

Tummy Fat is Toxic Fat

Woman standing pulling measuring tape around waist.Fat around the middle manufactures an array of chemical messengers including blood-clotting agents, substances that contract blood vessels and raise blood pressure, inflammatory agents, hormones and molecules that control hunger. 

Fat cells are also able to produce an immune response in the body, which causes inflammation.

Fat cells secrete oestrogen and two other compounds — tumour necrosis factor alpha and resistin — both of which interfere with the functioning of insulin.

Not all fat in the body behaves in the same way and it is the fat around the middle that is more metabolically active than fat elsewhere.

It has also been called “toxic fat” because it increases your risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, cancer and Type 2 diabetes.

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High blood pressure link to vitamin D

DCF 1.0VITAMIN D deficiency may be associated with high blood pressure, according to research published on TheHeart.org. The study followed 112 people with high blood pressure who had their vitamin D levels checked.

Ninety-two of them were deficient at the start of the study. Giving the participants vitamin D supplements over 20 weeks showed a significant reduction in systolic blood pressure (the top number for blood pressure) (reduced by 6.8 mmHg) and also diastolic blood pressure (the bottom number) was reduced by 1.7mmHg.

How can you reduce high blood pressure?

  • Get your vitamin D level checked by a simple home finger prick test.
  • Supplement with vitamin D if you are deficient and then re-test to make sure the level is back to normal
  • Eat more oily fish and eggs as they contain vitamin D
  • Get out in the sunshine whenever possible (without wearing sunscreen)
  • Reduce your salt intake and use herbs such as ginger and garlic to flavour your food instead.
  • Follow a healthy eating programme (contact me for details), because being overweight – especially when carrying the weight around the middle of your body – increases your risk of high blood pressure.

Source: TheHeart.org http://www.theheart.org/conferences/esh/2012.do

Tamex H, Thadhani RI, 2012, Curr Opin Nephrol Hypertens, 21, 5, 492-9 and Larsen T, 2012, presented at the European Society of Hypertension, London

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