You may have been told to cut down on salt, fat, sugar, and other “unhealthy” ingredients to lower your blood pressure.
Instead, you’re forced to load your dish with greens and fruits, and maybe take some herbs or supplements.
But one ingredient—which could be the key to curing high blood pressure—has been almost completely ignored until now.
And there’s at least an 85% chance that you’ll jump up and down with joy after reading about this popular ingredient that you should load into your diet.
According to recent evidence, the sources of protein in your daily diet might be the missing link to preventing and reducing high blood pressure.
Point-for-point on the blood pressure scale, the benefits obtained from protein are on par with lifestyle factors, such as exercise and the DASH diet.
The Protein-Blood Pressure Connection
Your artery walls, as well as the muscles that line them and allow them to expand and contract, are made of protein. As it turns out, certain amino acids (the building blocks of protein) are more important than others when it comes to building strong arteries.
A study of 2,000 women has found that those who consumed more than seven of the amino acids known to be heart-protective had lower blood pressure levels and more flexible arteries than the cohort who consumed less of these amino acids.
Scientists found that participants eating diets high in vegetable protein had lower pressure in the main artery that was closest to the heart—a useful indicator of how hard the heart has to work to push blood through the body. By contrast, certain animal-derived amino acids were found to make the arteries suppler.
The bottom line is that the best diet for healthy blood pressure, according to these researchers, is one that emphasizes lots of plant foods along with moderate amounts of lean meat. So let’s take a look at the seven amino acids that were used in this study, how they lower blood pressure, and the foods in which they are found.
A Closer Look at What These Seven Amino Acids Do
Glutamic acid, arginine, cysteine, glycine, and histidine all raise levels of nitric oxide, a potent blood vessel dilator.
Cysteine is also a component of the antioxidant glutathione, which decreases oxidative stress on arteries and improves insulin resistance. This keeps arteries healthy and helps prevent high blood pressure by preventing high blood sugar.
Additionally, glycine contributes to the structure of collagen and elastin, two proteins that make the walls of your arteries both flexible and expandable.
Leucine lowers blood pressure by decreasing fat production and increasing muscle mass.
Tyrosine is converted into the nerve-stimulating neurotransmitter epinephrine, also known as adrenaline. Although adrenaline raises blood pressure temporarily, its overall effect is to lower resting blood pressure.
These foods are good sources of these amino acids:
• Glutamic acid – Plant sources of glutamic acid may be even more effective than animal sources at lowering blood pressure. According to one study, a meal containing pea protein results in higher nitric oxide levels than a meal based on egg whites. Good sources of glutamic acid include salmon, chicken, soy, and sesame seeds.
• Arginine – Fish, chicken, mung bean sprouts, chocolate, and wheat germ are all excellent sources of arginine.
• Cysteine – Foods high in cysteine include ground mustard seed, cod, soybeans, sunflower seeds, and legumes.
• Glycine – Present in fish, meat, beans, nuts, and dairy.
• Histidine – Calms the nervous system and puts you in a relaxed mode. Found in high quantities in meats, soy, fish, nuts, whole grains, and seeds.
• Leucine – This branched-chain amino acid is famously present in whey protein (a byproduct of cheese production) and is a favorite of athletes and people seeking to lose weight. Dairy products, soybeans, beef, pumpkin seeds, tuna, and peanuts are good sources of leucine.
• Tyrosine – Good sources of tyrosine include seaweed, egg whites, cottage cheese, turkey, and mustard greens.
However, if eating protein is not enough to cure your blood pressure, there is an easier and more effective way. Learn how these 3 easy exercises can drop your blood pressure below 120/80—starting today…