Include Peanuts, Chickpeas, Apples In Diet To Fight Cholesterol And Hypertension

Eating a diet high in peanuts, chickpeas, apples and some amount of plant sterols may help lower cholesterol and also improve blood pressure, a new study has said.

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Include Peanuts, Chickpeas, Apples In Diet To Fight Cholesterol And Hypertension

Highlights

  1. A new study has indicated effects of 'portfolio diet' to fight high BP
  2. Plant foods are effective in lowering levels of cholesterol.
  3. Nuts, soy products and foods rich in soluble fibre can help fight BP
High cholesterol and blood pressure are health issues in an increasing number of people nowadays, all thanks to an extremely sedentary lifestyle, erratic sleep patterns and unhealthy diet. Even small diet and lifestyle adjustments can go a long way in mitigating the problem of high cholesterol. A new study has indicated that inclusion of four foods in the diet may help blood pressure patients regulate hypertension. Eating a diet high in peanuts, chickpeas, apples and some amount of plant sterols may help lower cholesterol and also improve blood pressure, the new study has said.

The study has suggested the "Portfolio Diet" as a possible dietary intervention to manage high blood pressure and cholesterol. Talking about the study one of the authors, Hana Kahleova, Director of Clinical Research at the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine in Washington DC said, "Previous clinical trials and observational studies have found strong evidence that a plant-based diet can improve heart health." She added by saying that the study has indicated that certain plant foods are especially effective in lowering levels of cholesterol as well as improving the overall cardiovascular health.

The study has indicated not just the type of foods that are beneficial to hypertension patients, but also the right quantities in which they must be included in the diet. The findings of the study were published in the journal Progress in Cardiovascular Diseases. The study is a meta-analysis and was prepared by integrating the results of several independent studies on the subject. It showed that a diet rich in plant sterols, nuts, fibre and plant protein can improve several markers for cardiovascular diseases risk. This includes lowering levels of cholesterol and improvement in blood pressure.

According to the study, people who followed this dietary pattern showed a 17 per cent reduction in levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) or the "bad" cholesterol. This diet also successfully reduced systolic blood pressure, diastolic blood pressure, triglycerides, total cholesterol and C-reactive protein.

Here are some foods that may fight hypertension and cholesterol:

1. Nuts: 42 gm of nuts like tree nuts or peanuts per day.

2. Soy Products: 50 gm of plant based proteins from soy products or pulses like beans, chickpeas and lentils per day.

3. Foods Rich In Soluble Fibre: 20 gm of viscous soluble fibre from foods like oats, barley, psyllium, eggplant, okra, apples, oranges or berries, per day.

4. Plant Sterols: 2 gm of products enriched with plant sterols per day.

(With IANS inputs)

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