In today’s chaotic, fast-paced environment, it’s all too easy to allow bad habits to creep in that take a toll on your health. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention state that one out of every three American adults currently has high blood pressure. Blood pressure is a measure of the force of blood against the walls of your arteries. These vessels carry oxygenated blood away from your heart to other parts of your body. High blood pressure, or hypertension, occurs when the pressure stays high for long periods of time, rather than following a natural ebb and flow. While some foods have beneficial effects on your heart, others can send your blood pressure skyrocketing. Check out this list of foods and beverages to avoid.
Bacon, along with ham and other processed food items, is high in salt. The sodium in salt is essential for maintaining the proper balance of electrolytes in your body. However, too much salt throws off the proper balance of fluids in the body. When your kidneys are unable to excrete excess amounts of sodium in your urine, they begin to build up in your bloodstream. Excess sodium in your bloodstream attracts water, which increases your blood volume and requires your heart to work harder, which in turn increases your blood pressure. Avoid bacon as well as other processed foods such as hot dogs, ham, and sausage links.
Gooey, melty cheese tastes great, but it can wreak havoc on your blood pressure. Part of the problem stems from the high fat content of cheese. An even bigger problem is the sodium content. Avoid cheese that is high in sodium, such as feta, string cheese, and Roquefort. For tasty cheese with less salt, you can use mozzarella, cottage cheese, goat cheese, or Swiss cheese.