Diet and Blood Pressure

laurainsdcaJuly 5, 2006

I am so amazed that I have to share this with all of you.

DH and I are in our early 40's and by most accounts healthy. While I do snack on the occasionally handful of cheetos, I feel we eat "pretty healthy" compared to most.

Some time back DH started getting severe headaches out of the blue. We made jokes about "the brain tumor" but really, they were horribly debilitating and he was scared.

My Step Dad was visiting and took his blood pressure with his portable kit and it was high. He's always had low blood pressure and we dismissed it as a fluke. But the other day he took it in the drug store on a lark and it was high again. Like real high.

He started reading about hypertension on the internet and the headaches and eye pain were symptoms.

So he wants to go on this "heart healthy" diet. I'm like "Yeah yeah whatever, blah blah blah..." because it is ALWAYS "some new magic bullet diet plan" with him trying to lose 10 pounds and be healthier. BUT, the hypertension was real I was supportive and decided to humor him.

We became aware of salt intake, and made SIMPLE switches. Whole wheat pasta instead of white flour. Ground turkey meat sauce instead of hamburger. No added salt while cooking. Less diet soda. Grilled fish fillet and grilled chicken instead of fried fish or a carne asada burrito. Yellow squash. Green beans. (fresh, of course) All bran muffins instead of white flour biscuits. Fresh sliced peaches (and other fresh fruit) instead of peach pie in a crust. Raw almonds instead of salted chips. Oh, and some NASTY salmon burgers that I had to run off and wolf down a handful of cheetos after eating, personally, I'll be avoiding THOSE (he liked them fine). But everything else was just SCRUMPTIOUS.

I went into this very skeptical 'cause like I said, I felt we ate decent already. But check this out:

IN FOUR DAYS he went from "you are a stroke waiting to happen" level blood pressure to being in the OPTIMUM zone. FOUR DAYS of just watching salt and eating "multigrain" over processed.

It really shocked me because I think of diet choices as being something that has to accumulate over years but it appears just a few days in the wrong, or RIGHT, direction can change everything.

OH, and he's been full the whole time, totally satisfied and not craving like usual, and it's been about SIX days now and his weight is its lowest in TWO YEARS and he has not been trying to LOSE this time, just trying to eat healthier.

I thought I should share in case any of you or your loved ones have high blood pressure.

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Give your hubby an "atta boy!" That's amazing!

I found a good web site today for healthy eating:

Here is a link that might be useful: World's Healthiest Foods

    Bookmark   July 5, 2006 at 7:14PM
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Good for you. I take spells of eating right, but then I seem to get over it. Summers are easy, lots of vege's from the garden, winter all I want to do is sit and snack.

I like that site Teresa. Thanks for posting

    Bookmark   July 5, 2006 at 7:17PM
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Teresa, that site is awesome. Thanks!!!

Grammy, you're right -- it's much easier in the summer, certainly where the fresh fruit is concerned.

I grew up on a farm with huge garden and tons of fruit trees. Now I have none of that and I am a real snob about "grocery store" fruit being GARBAGE, but such a snob that I didn't know those hard as a rock peaches actually RIPEN if you give them a couple days (who knew?!) so even though there's no good fruit stand nearby I find I can get decent stuff if I pay attention.

DH is very excited and now bugging me about exercise again. (Great, I've created a monster). I go through good/bad phases with that...

    Bookmark   July 5, 2006 at 7:48PM
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Wish my husband would take this healthy-eating, need to exercise attitude more seriously. Good for your DH to actually do something about his health - he will thank himself when he's in his 60's! Our big sabotage to healthy eating is all these car club gettogethers, with the potluck (one club REALLY know how to put out the good food!) so summer is actually full of more temptations for us - plus the cruise nights at - where else - a fast-food drivein. I've gotten really good at finding the low-cal, less dangerous items on the menu, but it's hard! I like alot of the stuff that's good for me, but DH goes for the double cheese-greasy, and of course, it comes with fries! We're starting to eat before we go to the drive-ins, and when I fix a meal, I stress to him - "now, the green beans are part of the meal" - or "there's your dish of peaches" etc. - and he's starting to eat them - used to just say "I don't want any right now" and I'd let it go - but I want him around a few more years, so I keep encouraging him. Eating right is a lifelong habit.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2006 at 8:22PM
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My DH has turned into a semi-monster too. A friend of his got him started riding a bicycle about 1 1/2 years ago and took him on a bike tour in Florida (Florida Safari, great group). There were lots of folks in their 70s and 80s riding bikes 60-100 miles a day. DH got the bug bad and started riding every day. I got him a pda for Christmas and he downloaded a program that keeps a record of how much you weigh, how much you want to lose, and balances diet and exercise and tells you how much protein/carbs/fat ... you need to eat each day to stay on track. When he has eaten his allowance he quits eating or goes for another bike ride. He has lost 50 pounds since Christmas. I'm not sure I could be that dedicated, not to mention I don't really like bike riding (that old arthritis starts to bug my shoulders and neck), I much prefer to walk or garden for exercise.


    Bookmark   July 5, 2006 at 10:40PM
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Wow--I'm going out to excersise right now!

    Bookmark   July 6, 2006 at 1:53PM
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Grammy, I think my DH has that same program. It's starting to bug... He has already put tonights dinner in and informed me that he has "23 calories left over" for the day. He's doing the same thing with his exercise -- against the calories.

But he's lost more weight. Not that he was ever overweight in my opinion but his tummy always bulged a little.

ScrapHappy -- yes, it's very hard to eat right when you are not at home. I used to travel a lot for business and the problem I have is that in my mind, eating out is a "special" occasion. So I don't want to blow it on a salad! But when you're eating out every day for weeks on end, I guess every meal can't be pasta alfredo or rib eye steak.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2006 at 4:27PM
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My hubby has high blood pressure suddenly. Guess what? It wasnt his diet. It was his multivitamin. (I had the same problem with a different brand months earlier and figured out the problem fast. He takes 2 garlic tablets a day and his bp is in the *excellent* range. Just thought I would mention as it isnt always the diet. We eat only whole grains and high fiber diet (me more high fiber than him, but I am a stay at home mom.) Kudos to your hubby for the weight loss and good luck to both of you.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2006 at 10:29PM
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The multvitamin? How did you figure it out and what was it that caused the problem?

    Bookmark   July 27, 2006 at 7:59AM
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