High blood pressure: Whey protein can lower reading amid coronavirus lockdown |

High blood pressure is a common condition in which the long-term force of the blood against your artery walls is high enough that it may eventually cause health problems, such as heart disease. This is because a consistently high blood pressure causes the arteries that supply oxygen and blood to the heart to lose their stretchiness. Hardened arteries restrict the amount of oxygen and blood that can be transported to the heart – a potentially fatal mechanism.

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The condition is strongly tied to eating an unhealthy diet, such as processed foods.

Processed foods usually contain a high amount of salt and salt raises your blood pressure.

It is therefore imperative to avoid an unhealthy diet to control your blood pressure.

The temptation to slip out of a healthy routine is higher than usual in light of the current circumstances, however.

READ MORE: High blood pressure: Those with the condition told to be extra vigilant during coronavirus

 

Whey protein drinks significantly lowered blood pressure in hypertensive adults

High blood pressure: Whey protein drinks significantly lowered blood pressure in hypertensive adults (Image: Getty Images)

The current lockdown, which is aimed at reducing the risk of catching and spreading COVID-19 – a deadly new disease caused by coronavirus, poses a threat to high blood pressure because people are more likely to binge on processed foods, which send blood pressure soaring.

While you cannot change the current situation, swapping unhealthy foods for items proven to lower your reading can ensure you keep the danger of high blood pressure at bay while at home.

One simple way to reduce your blood pressure is to add whey protein to your drinks.

Whey protein is a collection of proteins found in whey, a byproduct of cheesemaking.

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According to a Washington State University study, beverages supplemented with whey-based protein can significantly reduce elevated blood pressure.

The research, led by nutritional biochemist Susan Fluegel, and published in International Dairy Journal, found that daily doses of commonly available whey brought a more than six-point reduction in the average blood pressure of men and women with elevated systolic and diastolic blood pressures.

Systolic and diastolic blood pressure are the numbers used to measure blood pressure.

While the study was confined to 71 student subjects between the ages of 18 and 26, Fluegel said that older people with blood pressure issues would likely get similar results.

Shun processed foods, which contain a lot of salt

How to lower your reading: Shun processed foods, which contain a lot of salt (Image: Getty Images )

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The study, which Fluegel did for her doctorate in nutritional biochemistry, noted that researchers in an earlier study found no blood-pressure changes in people who took a whey-supplemented drink.

At first, she saw no consistent improvement either. But then she thought to break out her subjects into different groups and found significant improvements in those with different types of elevated blood pressure.

Improvements began in the first week of the study and lasted through its six-week course.

Other ways to lower your blood pressure

Exercise also lowers blood pressure so it is important to make the most of the one form of exercise the government has permitted a day during the lockdown.

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Exercise once a day during lockdown to keep your reading in check

How to lower blood pressure: Exercise once a day during lockdown to keep your reading in check (Image: Getty Images )How does exercise help to lower blood pressure?

The NHS explains: “Being active and taking regular exercise lowers blood pressure by keeping your heart and blood vessels in good condition.”

As the health site points out, regular exercise can also help you lose weight, which will also help lower your blood pressure.

Adults should do at least 150 minutes (two hours and 30 minutes) of moderate-intensity aerobic activity, such as cycling or fast walking, every week, advises the health site.

“Physical activity can include anything from sport to walking and gardening,” it adds.