Lifestyle: High blood pressure

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Asunta Simoloka

Asunta Simoloka

By Asunta Simoloka

With changing lifestyle patterns in Zambia, it is not surprising that High Blood pressure, also known as hypertension, is becoming all too common.

Heart disease, stroke, and kidney failure are some of the devastating complications of hypertension.  Despite being common, hypertension is highly preventable, treatable, and even reversible through proper diet and exercise.

Processed foods, meat, and lack of exercise make a perfect recipe for high blood pressure.

redmeatMeat contains carnitine and other substances that harden blood vessels thereby causing high blood pressure.  Processed starchy foods like ‘Breakfast’ maize meal, white rice, white pasta, and cakes and added sugars in soft drinks, juices, and other sweetened foods are converted into belly fat, further increasing the risk for hypertension.

Most processed foods have salt, meaning that there is way more salt in your diet than you are adding to food.  To make this poor diet profile even worse, people just fail to drink water.

Instead of changing habits, people find it easy to just take antihypertensive drugs but this only masks the problem.

Moreover, overusing druchibwabwags causes harmful side effects that could be even worse than the original problem.  Furthermore, antihypertensive drugs classified as diuretics and beta blockers are known to cause erectile dysfunction.

Please do not discontinue any medication without consulting with your doctor.

The typical rural diet, rich in unprocessed foods and mostly plant foods, can not only prevent hypertension, this diet can reverse the disease.



grainsorghumCoarse wholegrain maize meal, beans, peas, groundnuts, and sorghum are rich in fiber which controls blood pressure and reduces belly fat. Magnesium and potassium, abundant in Sorghum, also control blood pressure by balancing body fluids.


Other foods rich in potassium are bananas, potatoes, sweet potatoes, sweet potato leaves, pumpkin leaves, and pumpkins.   Hibiscus, a vegetable known locally as lumanda, sindambi, or mundambi instantly controls hypertension due to phyto nutrients called anthocyanins.

However, adding bicarbonate soda destroys all these nutrients. Drinking plenty of water and staying active are also essential tools.  Exercise is one of the best drugs for controlling blood pressure, it is free and all side effects are positive.


11 Responses to Lifestyle: High blood pressure

  1. Kuno kwamene nili kulibe lumanda can some body please send it to me on ethiopian airline?

    Samva Adamva Nkhwangwa ili mu mutu
    June 24, 2013 at 10:47 am

  2. Sorghum beans and mugaiwa are all plentifull and cheap but we choose muzungu life style at our own risk.

    June 24, 2013 at 11:40 am

  3. Thanks Asunta keep on educating us slowly we will see how important it is to stick to the village diet.

    June 25, 2013 at 1:57 am

  4. I like the well articulated article on the ways of reducing or avoid hypertention. Kindly shed more light on au much one should consume alcohol (in case of alcohol takers)

    June 25, 2013 at 8:39 am

    • The only alcoholic beverage I recommend is red wine and even that has to be taken in moderation. No more than a glass a day. Avoid beer and other alcoholic drinks because they damage your liver and other vital organs.

      July 8, 2013 at 11:42 am

  5. One big hassle, from the perspective of a hypertensive person, is dealing with work and BP.

    Work demands hours spent fasting, when one eats we tend to over eat.

    When spouse is asked to shop with my health considered, they don’t. When you shop for yourself, all hell breaks loose.

    The rubbish of “keeping up with the Bwalyas” makes things worse.

    Things are rough, with no healthy options available and lazy wives that want to mico wave water, it fails!

    June 25, 2013 at 6:04 pm

  6. Good article indeed,keep it up my sister!

    Learned Man
    June 26, 2013 at 8:14 am

  7. This is a great article, I have been suffering from high BP for about a year. And, you are so right when you say in your article that doctors just treat the high BP and not the cause. In my case I think that I also have an issue with my adrenal gland or over active adrenal glands. Which can also cause high BP. Thank you so much for your insightful information, which will change allot of lives including mine. The paragraph about Hybiscus, eliminating high BP is amazing, and will immediately try this and report back.

    Dez Hanna
    July 3, 2013 at 4:37 pm

    • Please tell us about your experience with hibiscus after your have tried it. That information will be useful.

      July 8, 2013 at 11:46 am

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    July 23, 2013 at 8:29 pm

  9. Wow Iam Impressed by this Article keep educating people about their well being good Diet & exercise is the greatest medications for most of these non communicable Diseases…Iam One Cholosi Peace the COG

    Mr Cholosi Peace
    April 4, 2019 at 6:46 am

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Start: 2019-07-01 End: 2019-07-31