Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Hypertension and the Good News for Fast Food Lovers

Some of the UK’s leading fast food chains have committed to lowering levels of salt and fat within their meals. McDonalds, Burger King, KFC, Subway, Nando’s and Wimpy have all promised to lower levels of saturated and trans fats as well as lowering salt levels. This is excellent news for all fast food lovers but especially those with high blood pressure and cholesterol.At last the United Kingdom’s leading fast food chains are taking responsibility for the amount of salt and saturated and trans fats in their food which will make their meals more heart and blood pressure friendly. Fast food has always been known as a bad offender when it comes to fats and salt content and until recently, it has been difficult to make healthy informed choices as the majority of their menus have not displayed nutritional information. Many of these meals have contained up to two thirds (if not more) of the maximum daily recommended salt intake.Limiting salt intake and reducing the amount of trans and saturated fats are two of the most important and effective ways of preventing or reducing high blood pressure and risk of heart attacks. The maximum recommended intake of salt is just 6g per day as stipulated by the Department of Health, and the maximum recommended daily intake of saturated fat is just 20g. When you think that at present, a McDonalds Big Mac on its own without any fries or sides contains a total of 10g of saturated fat and 2.1g of salt. With levels like this you can see why it is important to know the nutritional values of such food product and for the manufacturers of them to act more responsibly by showing the ingredients and by trying to make them healthier.Eating less salt has many health benefits including assisting in lowering blood pressure which may, in turn, decrease the risk of serious cardiovascular conditions. Sufferers of high blood pressure who frequently monitor their pressure levels, will notice the difference that more or less salt makes to their reading, for instance if they have eaten something that they wouldn’t have usually. Fortunately keeping an eye on salt content in food is becoming easier as is self monitoring of blood pressure at home with the increased availability of electronic blood pressure monitors. Controlling and monitoring high blood pressure can be assisted by owning a personal blood pressure monitor. Whilst blood pressure is measured during doctor’s visits, it is often beneficial to monitor blood pressure in between appointments to give a more consistent and accurate reading. Home monitoring of blood pressure can help sufferers stick to their lifestyle changes by providing a visual reminder of their condition and give visual progress indicators. Buying a blood pressure monitor can be a difficult and confusing process, not only is there extensive choice, the price brackets and technical information can vary greatly. This is why the British Hypertension Society (BHS) have created the BHS list of approved blood pressure monitors to make the selection process easier. BHS approved blood pressure monitors can be purchased online from First Aid Warehouse, the UK’s premier supplier of medical and first aid equipment and accessories. First Aid Warehouse also stock a range of items to assist with exercise and weight loss goals such as step counters and body fat monitors, and there is also a very comprehensive range of vitamins, minerals, health supplements, personal testing and smoking cessation products.-- Blood Pressure Monitors and Medical Plasters Source: http://www.articletrader.com

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