10 ways to beat high blood pressure with food, from the Harvard Heart Letter

Altering your diet to control cholesterol makes perfect sense. Doing it to control blood pressure doesn't seem quite so straightforward. Yet food can have a direct effect on blood pressure, according to the October 2010 issue of the Harvard Heart Letter. Salt certainly plays a role—reducing intake often reduces blood pressure. But fruits, vegetables, low-fat dairy foods, beans, nuts, whole-grain carbohydrates, and unsaturated fats also have healthful effects on blood pressure. There isn't a single "magic" food. Instead, these foods set the foundation for an all-around healthful eating strategy that is good for blood pressure and much more. A healthful diet is an excellent initial treatment when blood pressure creeps into the unhealthy zone, and a perfect partner for medications. The Harvard Heart Letter outlines some evidence-based advice about diet and blood pressure:
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