Dr Chris Steele shares diet tips on reducing blood pressure

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High blood pressure, or hypertension, is a precursor of life-threatening emergencies such as strokes and heart attacks. While you can tame your high reading through a healthy diet, sometimes, it’s not clear what you should avoid. One popular drink linked to plentiful health benefits might not be so generous when it comes to blood pressure.

Whether you take it with milk or go for the strong black stuff, coffee is one of the most popular beverages out there.

Due to its ability to give you an energy boost, this dark drink is enjoyed by millions of Britons on a daily basis.

What’s more, coffee has even been linked to various health perks, ranging from longevity to brain health.

However, research, published in the journal Nutrients, suggests that one area that might not be benefited by the black drink is hypertension.

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In fact, the study shares that drinking coffee could lead to an “acute” increase in blood pressure.

Two to three cups of the warming drink increased systolic blood pressure by 3–14 mmHg and diastolic blood pressure by 4–13 mmHg.

Furthermore, this effect might be even more pronounced in people who don’t enjoy caffeinated beverages habitually, the research adds.

The tricky part about coffee seems to be the main ingredient included in every cup – caffeine.

The study concluded that daily coffee consumption in older Polish people was linked to an increase in blood pressure.

But the researchers added that while this rise was noted, it wasn’t “statistically” significant.

Furthermore, another study, published in the journal Vascular Health and Risk Management, even outlined the coffee ingredients that might benefit your cardiovascular health.

The researchers penned: “There are many other substances in coffee, such as polyphenols, soluble fibre and potassium, which could exert a beneficial effect in the cardiovascular system.”

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Polyphenols are plant goodies associated with positive effects on blood pressure and potassium is a mineral known for its hypertension-busting powers.

However, the same study also shares that coffee seems to lead to an increase in blood pressure reading, even though it may only be small.

The study adds that based on the conflicting results, the relationship between the drink and blood pressure remains “unclear”.

They add that most evidence suggests that when you drink coffee regularly, you shouldn’t be risking hypertension.

The NHS recommends cutting back on the popular drink in order to prevent the condition.

The health service shares: “Drinking more than four cups of coffee a day may increase your blood pressure.

“If you’re a big fan of coffee, tea or other caffeine-rich drinks, such as cola and some energy drinks, consider cutting down.

“It’s fine to drink tea and coffee as part of a balanced diet, but it’s important that these drinks are not your main or only source of fluid.”

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