Living With High Blood Pressure

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Changes for life

Reading food labels

Reading food labels is an important habit to get into if you want to make good decisions every time you are grocery shopping.

With packaged foods, the label is your guide. It’s how you can know how many calories are in that food, as well as the amount of salt and sugar. Try to eat mainly green labels with a few ambers, and avoid reds as much as you can. The label will also tell you the portion size so you can be careful not to eat too much.

Remember, it’s these small everyday decisions that build up to real changes in your health. Just keep focussed on the choices you can make that day to eat better and improve your blood pressure.

Read 10 tips for understanding food labels >

Finding your favourite salt alternatives

Cutting back on salt is one of the best things you can do if you need to lower your blood pressure. Eating less salt doesn’t have to mean bland and boring food. Here are three delicious ways to season your favourite meals without salt.

Herbs – Whether they’re fresh or dried, herbs go brilliantly with meats, potatoes and pasta.

Spices – Build up your spice collection to bring your dishes to life. You don’t need a huge collection, just a few go-tos. Even if you don’t like spicy food, cinnamon, nutmeg and turmeric all add flavour without heat.

Citrus – For salads, fish and sauces, citrus juice and zest can really add interest to a meal.

Try these 19 salt alternatives >

Beat your excuses and start exercising

  • If you don’t have time - build exercise into your day-to-day routine, like cycling to work or taking the stairs instead of the lift. 5 minutes of walking up and down the stairs is better than sitting still.
  • If you’re stressed - going for a walk is a much better stress buster than sitting on the sofa watching TV. Just 20 minutes will boost your mood.
  • If you don’t fancy the gym - you don’t have to be in a gym to exercise. Going for a jog, a bike ride or just doing the gardening all count towards your goals.
  • If you can’t get out the house - there are loads of free workout videos on the internet, or try this one on the BHF website.

Got an excuse? The answer is here >

Healthy everyday foods

Whether it’s after a long day at work, on a chilly winter’s evening or at a family gathering, a nutritious meal is a warming treat. These BHF heart healthy meals will show you how to make small changes to regular dishes so you can enjoy them as you work towards lowering your blood pressure.

More healthy, filling meals this way >

Join the conversation on HealthUnlocked

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