High blood pressure is associated with diseases such as diabetes, stroke, heart disease, kidney failure. Dr Levi Kwarisiima, a Cardiologist at Braakline Medical Centre in Bwaise, says besides reducing your sodium intake, it is important you check what you eat.

Watermelon
Watermelon contains an amino acid called L-citrulline which helps improve circulation and lowers systolic blood pressure. A drop in aortic systolic blood pressure is important in mitigating cardiovascular disease risk.
Beetroot
“The root vegetable is rich in nitrates, which relax blood vessels and improve blood flow. Drinking a glass of beetroot juice can yield a five-point drop in blood pressure in a few hours.

The effect is usually greater if consumed in the long run day by day. Yes, beetroot juice lowers systolic blood pressure in just a few hours,” Dr Kwarisiima says.

Bananas
Bananas are one of the most potassium-rich foods. Potassium boosts kidney function thereby helping them flush sodium out of the body and also helps in relaxing artery walls which boosts heart health.
Eat less salt because too much salt can cause a spike in blood pressure. A drop in sodium consumption may lead to a drop in your blood pressure.

Lifestyle
Stress elevates your blood pressure and for those suffering from hypertension, stress can cause cardiovascular damage. Sleep deprivation can also lead to hypertension and other health-related problems. “It is important that you exercise to stay fit. Belly fat may trigger high blood pressure. Reduce your alcohol intake, quit smoking because nicotine is said to increase blood pressure,” says Dr Kwarisiima.