Researchers have found that drinking a glass (8oz/250ml) of beetroot juice may lower blood pressure readings by as much as 7% (10mm hg).
Beetroot contains high levels of dietary nitrate – also found in celery, cabbage and some lettuces – which causes a chemical reaction in the blood, increasing oxygen in areas of the body which are lacking supply including the brain.
Beetroot juice can be bought from most supermarkets.
Hypertension is a major risk factor for heart disease, stroke and kidney failure. About 16 million people in the UK suffer from high blood pressure where the reading is over 140/90 mm Hg. Unfortunately there are no symptoms of hypertension although on rare occasions the following symptoms may indicate it:
- a persistent headache
- blurred or double vision
- shortness of breath
If you suffer any of these get your GP to take your blood pressure as soon as possible.
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