11 Worst Foods for High Blood Pressure

Often high blood pressure and Menopause seem to go together, but could changing your diet help reduce it?


High blood pressure seems to be more common at menopause. There can be a number of factors involved from stress and anxiety to weight gain and often there are dietary issues as well.

If you are looking to help keep your blood pressure and a healthy level, then these are the things you need to avoid or reduce.

1 Frozen meals

They’re fast and convenient and no problem to have occasionally, BUT they’re often loaded with salt, so it’s best to avoid them.

If you need something quick every once in a while, look for options with 600 milligrams of salt (sodium) or less.

2 Salty snacks

One of the biggest issues with high blood pressure can be salt, and this is particularly true of things like crisps, crackers and popcorn.

Most adults should eat no more than one teaspoon, that’s 2,300 milligrams a day.

3. Pickled foods

Kimchi, sauerkraut, and other pickled foods like beetroot, onions or gherkins often have plenty of sodium.

Try to limit the amount of pickled foods you eat and try marinades made from vinegar, pineapple juice, or citrus fruits like lemons, limes, and oranges. They add a tart flavor with less sodium.

4 Bread

It doesn’t taste salty, but it’s got plenty of it. One slice of white bread has between 80 and 230 milligrams.

The next time you make a sandwich, reach for whole-grain bread, a muffin, or you can also eat your sandwich “open-faced” with just one slice.

5 Soup

It’s delicious on a cold day, but it’s often high in sodium so do check the label as just one cup (8 ounces) of tomato soup can have anywhere from 700 to 1,260 milligrams.

Buy low-sodium versions of your favourites or make your own and flavour with herbs and spices.

6 Tomato juice and sauces

These can often be very high indeed insult, for instance threequarters of a cup of canned tomato juice packs 660 milligrams of sodium.

Look for low-sodium versions where possible,  particularly if you are making your own pasta sauces.

7 Processed Meat

Any processed meat typically has about 750 milligrams or more of sodium per serving. That’s about six thin slices and the same goes for sausage, bacon, corned beef, ham hocks, and spareribs.

Stick with fish, chicken, and lean cuts of meat.

8 Pizza

Whether it’s frozen or a takeaway it’s likely high in sodium. A 4-ounce slice of frozen cheese pizza has 370 to 730 milligrams.

A 4-ounce slice from a restaurant has even more, at 510-760 milligrams. To cut back, order a smaller pizza and ditch the stuffed crust. Opt for thin crust and more veg toppings for even more health benefits.

9 Beer, wine, and alcohol

Your chances of high blood pressure go up when you drink too much alcohol. Women should keep it at one drink a day such as 4 ounces of wine or 1½ ounces of 80-proof spirits.

Red wine has been linked to heart health, but you should still limit the amount you drink.

10 Cheese

Some types are more likely to raise your blood pressure than others. Stick with cheeses that are naturally low in sodium, like Swiss, which has 75 milligrams per 1-ounce serving. Goat, ricotta, and fresh mozzarella are good, too.

Processed and hard cheeses such as cheddar and cottage cheese have more sodium. A half-cup of regular cottage cheese has 455 milligrams.

11 Condiments

Ketchup, soy sauce, and salad dressings are all high in sodium. Shop for low-sodium substitutes. Or try lemon juice and vinegar for added flavour.

Helpful information 

At Menopause one of the major factors leading to higher blood pressure can be the increase in weight that is so common at this time.

At that time of life it is often related to hormone in balance and so checking that you have good progesterone levels is certainly helpful for keeping the weight down and your symptoms such as hot flushes under control.