Health Watch - Preventing Hypertension: Diet

Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.


This week on Health Watch, we’re talking about preventing and dealing with high blood pressure. Although medicine is an important part of treating and possibly even preventing high blood pressure, it’s still essential for patients to watch their diets. That doesn’t mean you’re doomed to a bland diet, but you may have to learn to make tradeoffs.

A high-fat, high-salt diet can have dangerous consequences for people with high blood pressure. Try not to eat more than 1,500 milligrams of sodium a day. Dr. Shawna Nesbitt, a hypertension expert at UT Southwestern Medical Center, says she tells her patients they can have one special meal for a holiday or other occasion as long as they don’t follow unhealthy eating patterns on a long-term basis. If you’re going to have a big dinner that will be high in salt, watch your sodium intake at breakfast and lunch.     

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September 2010


Health Watch is heard Monday through Friday nationwide on ABC Satellite Radio. Call your local radio station and ask if they carry the program.

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