Do you know what your blood pressure is? If the answer is no, be sure to get your blood pressure checked by a healthcare professional at least once every two years. Why? According to the Heart & Stroke Foundation of Canada, more than 40% of people with high blood pressure aren’t even aware they have it.1 High blood pressure can damage the lining of arteries anywhere in the body leading to atherosclerosis or narrowing of the arteries. And that’s a real problem, as it can double or even triple your risk of heart disease/stroke and increase your risk of kidney disease.2
The good news is that whether you wish to control high blood pressure or just prevent it from happening, mushrooms can help. Being at a healthy weight, cutting back on salt and eating more foods rich in potassium, including fresh mushrooms, are three of the Heart & Stroke Foundation’s recommended lifestyle changes for controlling blood pressure.3
Fresh Mushrooms Can Help!
Slash the Sodium
- Fresh mushrooms are naturally very low in sodium with only 5 mg per ½ cup serving of uncooked white button mushrooms.4 Use them to boost flavor in pastas, salads, stir-fries and more.
- Aim for less than 2300 milligrams of sodium per day, about one teaspoon, from processed foods and salt added during food preparation and at the table.5 Read Nutrition Facts Labels to check how much sodium is in a food. If the % Daily Value is higher than 20, the food is considered high in sodium. Leave it on the shelf!
Watch that Weight
- Fresh mushrooms are a perfect choice for weight management, since they have a high water content, are low in fat and contain some fibre: three factors that will help you feel full with fewer calories. That means less room for other calorie-laden foods.
Pick up more Potassium
- Fresh white button mushrooms contain 318 milligrams of potassium or 9% of the Daily Value in each ½ cup serving.6 Getting a little more potassium will help counteract the effects of too much sodium on blood pressure.7
Mushrooms Make a Difference
- Add ½ cup white button mushrooms to your omelette or scrambled eggs instead of ½ cup of cheddar cheese. Benefit: save 349 mg sodium and get twice the potassium (111 mg).8
- Mix 1 cup of diced grilled portabella mushrooms into pasta or pasta sauce instead of sausage. Benefit: save 632 mg sodium and get almost three times the potassium (630 mg).8
- Use ½ cup white button mushrooms with dips instead of corn chips. Benefit: save 552 mg sodium and get an extra 31 mg of potassium.8
For more on high blood pressure prevention and treatment visit Blood Pressure Canada at hypertension.ca or the Heart & Stroke Foundation of Canada at heartandstroke.ca.