People typically follow the keto diet to lose weight, but can a keto diet help lower your blood pressure? Learn about their connection.
The ketogenic (or keto) diet is a low-carb, high-fat diet that puts the body in a metabolic state of ketosis. As a result, your body effectively burns fat for energy. According to some studies, the keto diet may reduce blood sugar, insulin levels, and more. The following is an overview of this diet and how it may (or may not) help lower blood pressure.
How It Works
While some people use the keto diet to lose weight, it can also be part of a way to help reduce seizures in children. The Harvard Medical School explains the benefits for children with seizures:
- “We have solid evidence showing that a ketogenic diet reduces seizures in children, sometimes as effectively as medication. Because of these neuroprotective effects, questions have been raised about the possible benefits for other brain disorders such as Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, multiple sclerosis, sleep disorders, autism, and even brain cancer. However, there are no human studies to support recommending ketosis to treat these conditions.”
Harvard Medical School also notes that while the keto diet seems to be more effective than traditional low-fat diets, the effectiveness “seems to disappear over time.” The diet may also help patients with type 2 diabetes control their sugar levels, at least in the short term.
The Keto Diet and High Blood Pressure
If you have high blood pressure (also known as hypertension), then following the ketotarian diet may be beneficial. The ketotarian diet is a mostly plant-based diet that may boost your energy, combat inflammation, and reduce cravings by changing your body from sugar-burning to fat-burning. Moreover, many of the foods included in this diet help to naturally lower high blood pressure.
While the traditional keto diet emphasizes low carbs and high fat, some of the foods allowed may have a detrimental effect on your health. Through the ketotarian diet, you should be able to put the body into a state of ketosis without having to consume foods that increase blood pressure levels.
However, people who are currently taking medication for hypertension may need to consult their doctor before trying the keto diet. According to Grace Derocha, RD, certified diabetes and certified health coach at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, the keto diet may interact with hypertension medications. “If you have high blood pressure and are taking medication, the prescription mixed with the diet may cause abnormally low blood pressure test results,” she says.
If you want to follow the keto diet but have high blood pressure, you can follow a version of it called the ketotarian diet. As a result, you’ll be eating foods that won’t raise your blood pressure. If you’re looking for additional ways to boost your heart health, you can take supplements like L-arginine Plus. Its ingredients effectively promote blood pressure health, circulation, cholesterol, and more. Give your heart health the support it needs by eating healthily and taking L-arginine Plus.