High blood pressure can be very dangerous. I’m sure you know at least one person with high blood pressure. High blood pressure is a risk factor for a handful of serious conditions related to your heart, brain, and kidneys. Heart failure, Heart attack, stroke, Cardio Vascular disease and even Chronic Kidney Disease are all problems related to high blood pressure.
How Do I Get High Blood Pressure?
Some of the most common causes of high blood pressure are
- Too much sodium – Too much added on the plate to a SAD (Standard American Diet) is a recipe for high BP
- Stress – It’s true that stress can kill you!
- High Insulin or Insulin Resistance (remember yesterday’s post!?)
- High levels of fructose consumption
- Medications – there are plenty of medications that list high BP as a side effect. Sadly, most don’t question it.
My High Blood Pressure Story
During my pregnancy with my son I had preeclampsia. Because of that, I was induced a week and a half early. My blood pressure was so high the Dr thought I was going to have a stroke. I gave birth and was in ICU for a few days. My pressure did not come back down on it’s own. I was put on a few different pills for it and told to watch my salt intake. I stayed on those pills for about a year and then was weaned off them.
Fast forward about 15 years. I was at a normal routine checkup. My blood pressure was again getting high. I was also retaining fluids in my feet and ankles. Especially in the summer when it was hot. I was put on 2 different medications and a water pill for the fluid. I was now occasionally squeaking in just under the normal blood pressure range, but more often than not, I was falling under the elevated and or Stage 1 ranges. Still, all I was being told was to watch my salt intake. I purchased a cuff and downloaded an app so I can keep track on my own.
Why Do I Stay Keto?
I started my keto journey three years ago with the intention of losing weight. Lowering my blood pressure wasn’t even a thought. I didn’t even know that was a possibility. My only goal was to lose weight. About a year into the process I started noting all of the other benefits from eating a ketogenic diet. My inflammation was gone. I noticed that my lymphadema didn’t act up as much. My neuropathy was lessening. And I’ll be darned, my blood pressure was lowering.
I found that in the summer my feet weren’t swelling up. That was my first clue. I was only to take that pill on an “as needed” basis, so I stopped taking that pill. I made sure to monitor my BP daily. It was staying low. I ran out of pills and had to go for a check up a week later, so I didn’t bother to refill them (not that I advise doing that!) I discussed it with my Dr. My 50 pound weight loss was noted and I was given the ok to discontinue my BP medication on the condition that I continue to monitor it myself at home. To sum it up, one year after starting keto, and 50 pounds later, I no longer had high blood pressure.
Is Salt Bad?
I think one of the main reasons I LOVE eating keto is because of the salt. A ketogenic diet cuts out ALL processed foods. The foods I eat are real foods, that have not been infused with salt to help extend their shelf life. so I can really can be liberal with it. I LIKE SALT! For me, that was a win/win!
I am almost three years from when I changed the way I eat. This is the app I use to keep track of my blood pressure/heart rate.
As you can see, I check my pressure about every other week. It’s pretty consistent. Being off my medication is awesome! My main goal now is to keep the weight off. In addition, a new goal is to stay off pills for as long as I can!
How Can You Reduce Your Blood Pressure Naturally?
Like I said above, cutting carbs and processed foods will help to reduce inflammation and sodium naturally. A study done back in 2010 to see if eating low carb or a new diet pill produced better results. One of the results they found was that the low carb group reduced their blood pressure readings. Interesting, right?
How Can I Get Started?
Send me an email. It’s that simple. A new eight week class starts the first Monday of each month. Let’s have a conversation to see if keto is right for you!