World Health organisation (WHO) defines hypertension as a condition in which systolic pressure exceeds 160 mm Hg and diastolic pressure exceeds 95 mm Hg. Cardio vascular diseases, renal diseases, tumours of the brain or adrenal glands, hyperthyroidism or diseases of the ovaries or pituitary may cause hypertension.
Predisposing factors of hypertension are heredity, stress, obesity and smoking.
Headache, dizziness, impaired vision, failing memory, shortness of breath, pain over the heart, gastrointestinal disturbance and unexplained tiredness are some of the symptoms.
Energy : About 20 kcal/kg of ideal body weight are prescribed.
Protein : A diet of 60 g protein is necessary to maintain proper nutrition.
Fats : As they are prone to atherosclerosis it is advisable to avoid a high intake of animal or hydrogenated fat. About 20 g of fat is permitted.
Sodium : A low sodium diet should be given in severe hypertension, salt in cooking and salt on the table should be avoided. The other foods rich in sodium to be avoided are pickles, papad, chips, cheese, salted butter, canned foods, sauce, ketchup, baked foods where baking powder is used and foods where sodium salts are used as a preservative.
Fibre : A high fibre diet should be given.
Foods Included : Salads, Steamed foods, low sodium foods.