The #1 Best Snack to Manage High Blood Pressure, New Study Suggests — Eat This Not That

Controlling high blood pressure, also known as high blood pressure, is a key part of reducing serious health risks such as heart attack and stroke. Strategies to help include regular physical activity, eating plenty of fruits and vegetables, and consulting your doctor about medications. Now, it turns out that a delicious yogurt snack might be a part of this group, according to a new study in International Dairy Magazine.

Researchers studied 915 people with high blood pressure participating in a long-term study on aging, cardiovascular disease, and cognitive health. For nearly four decades, participants have provided information on dietary habits, as well as health data such as blood pressure, cholesterol and glucose levels – all of which play an important role in heart health.

They found that eating yogurt regularly, ideally on a daily basis, was associated with lower blood pressure overall, even for those who already had high blood pressure. Researchers note that even small amounts of yogurt can have a positive effect. (Related: The 100 Most Unhealthy Foods on the Planet)

This is likely because dairy products contain a range of micronutrients, including calcium, magnesium, and potassium. All three of these minerals are involved in regulating blood pressure, according to the study’s lead author, Alexandra Wade, a researcher in nutrition and cognition at the University of South Australia. But yogurt provides a unique boost compared to other dairy products like milk or cheese.

“Yogurt contains these minerals and also contains beneficial bacteria that promote the secretion of certain proteins associated with lower blood pressure,” she says. “We found that those who ate yogurt regularly had the strongest results in terms of lower blood pressure readings than those who didn’t consume yogurt at all.”

Related: What Happens To Your Body When You Eat Greek Yogurt

Keep in mind that this does not indicate that all types of yogurt are protective. Products that are high in sugar are likely to sabotage all those good effects. For example, a recent study in European Journal of Cardiology Too much added sugar in all foods has been linked to increased belly fat, which has been linked to an increased risk of diabetes and heart disease.

In terms of why this happens, study co-author Lynn Stephen, PhD, director of public health nutrition at the University of Minnesota School of Public Health, says consumption of added sugar creates a biological environment in which excess sugar is converted into fatty acids. They are stored as triglycerides and fats, usually in the abdomen.

She suggests checking labels — not just on yogurt but also on all products that may contain added sugar — to make sure your snack choices do more good than bad. It is recommended that you limit added sugar to less than 10% of your daily calories.

Everything you need to know about yogurt:

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