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Posts Tagged ‘lower blood pressure’

Happy National Nutrition Month!

“If your lifestyle does not control your diet…eventually your diet will control your lifestyle.” – Kathy Duran Thal, RDN

Cooper Clinic kicked off National Nutrition Month® with a free expo open to the public at Cooper Fitness Center. Despite the icy weather, more than 500 people attended and picked up free samples, recipes and more from 20-plus vendors. National Nutrition Month provides a good opportunity to look at your diet. Cooper Clinic and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics put together our top reasons to visit a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist.

  1. You have diabetes, cardiovascular problems or high blood pressure. A registered dietitian nutritionist serves as an integral part of your health care team by helping you safely change your eating plan without compromising taste or nutrition.
  2. You need to gain or lose weight. A registered dietitian nutritionist can suggest additional calorie sources for healthy weight gain or a restricted-calorie eating plan.
  3. You want to eat smart for your family. A registered dietitian nutritionist can help you sort through misinformation; learn how to read food labels; discover that healthy cooking is inexpensive; eat out without ruining your eating plan and more. Cooper Clinic Nutrition Services offers a Healthy Habits for Kids program.
  4. You have digestive problems. A registered dietitian nutritionist will work with your physician to help fine-tune your diet so you are not aggravating your condition. Kathy Miller, Co-Director of Cooper Clinic Nutrition Services, specializes in GI nutrition and celiac disease.
  5. You’re pregnant, trying to get pregnant or breastfeeding. A registered dietitian nutritionist can help make sure you’re getting enough of the nutrients you and your baby need.
  6. You’re caring for an aging parent. A registered dietitian nutritionist can help with food or drug interaction, proper hydration, special diets for hypertension and changing taste buds as you age.
  7. You want to improve your performance in sports. A registered dietitian nutritionist can help you set goals to achieve results—whether you’re running a marathon, skiing or jogging with your dog. Cooper Clinic Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Meridan Zerner is a board certified sports dietitian.
  8. Your teenager has issues with food and eating healthfully or you have a picky eater. A registered dietitian nutritionist can assist with eating disorders such as anorexia, bulimia and overweight issues.

View photos from the Cooper Nutrition Expo, see the recipes that were demonstrated and request an appointment online to meet with a Cooper Clinic Registered Dietitian Nutritionist today!

Can Hibiscus Oust Hypertension?

May 30, 2013 1 comment

TeaPut on the kettle! Yes, recent studies show that hibiscus tea can help to lower blood pressure. Published in the Journal of Nutrition (2010), one study showed that those who drank three cups of hibiscus tea had a 7.2 drop in systolic blood pressure. Experts think this might be due to the flavonoids, which can help dilate blood vessels. These results show that it could help to treat those with problems like hypertension.

“About one-third of the weight of a tea leaf is flavonoids, which is high, especially when  you consider that they are accompanied by virtually no calories,” Jeffrey B. Blumberg, PhD, director of Tufts’ HNRCA Antioxidants Research Laboratory and chair of the Fifth International Scientific Symposium on Tea and Human Health, explains.

To get the most flavonoids from tea, steep in hot water. Cold-brewed tea and powdered mixes generally don’t achieve the same flavonoid levels.

“Although the evidence toward these benefits is promising, more research is needed to determine what dose to take,” Meridan Zerner, MS, RD, CSSD, LD, Registered Dietitian at Cooper Clinic explains. “Medical professionals already know that hibiscus can react with certain drugs and that it isn’t good for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. If you have high blood pressure, check with your doctor prior to taking hibiscus.”

According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 67 million American adults (31 percent) have high blood pressure—that’s 1 in every 3 American adults.

“If we were able to reduce blood pressure just slightly and shift the entire population to a lower blood pressure, that would have a significant impact in terms of reduced numbers of people with hypertension and its consequences for cardiovascular disease,” Blumberg says. “Small, modest, long-term benefits on blood pressure can be very important from the public-health point of view.”

This tasty Hibiscus leaf can often found in many floral tea blends such as Red Zinger. If you need more flavor, add lemon or citrus juice. For more health tips from dietitians at Cooper Clinic, visit our website.