In Week 1 we talked about blood pressure basics. This week, we’ll look at changes we can make to our diet to help with blood pressure management.
Diets rich in fruits, veggies, and whole grains not only help prevent hypertension from developing, but also have been found to lower blood pressure by up to 11 mmHg if you do have high blood pressure. Does this mean that you have to stop eating all your favorite foods? Not at all! By focusing on improving eating patterns in your day-to-day meals, you can still include foods that you enjoy eating while supporting good health.
What does that eating pattern look like in real life? Enter the Brook Healthy Plate. The Brook Healthy Plate method utilizes a “plate model” to help us think about each meal in a simple and visual way. Using it to build meals takes the guesswork out of good nutrition. If you are able to make most of your meals resemble the Brook Healthy Plate, you are on the path to better blood pressure.
Flip over the cards to find out about the components of the Brook Healthy Plate method for building balanced meals.
So, can a meal fit into the Brook Healthy Plate model without perfectly fitting into the sections shown? Of course! The healthy plate model is a visual guide, not a rule-book! It simply helps us visualize proportions of food types in order to create balance and consistency, without requiring us to break out the measuring cups or scales!
Make sure you choose carbs that contain fiber for your Brook Healthy Plate. The fiber found in whole grains, beans, fruit, and starchy veggies will help keep your energy steady and making meals satisfying and filling.
Use a 8 to 10 inch plate, and don’t heap the food! This creates automatic portion control when following the Brook Healthy Plate method.
on November 3, 2020. Emily is a Registered Dietitian with her Master's degree in Nutrition from Bastyr University in Kenmore, WA, and is one of our Brook Experts.