Week 2:

Eating for Lower Blood Pressure

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. 

The Brook Healthy Plate

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. 

Here are some food items from each category to get your creative juices flowing:




Healthy Fats

Follow these steps to build your balanced meal:

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!


Focus on veggies

Feature low-carb veggies as the main component of your plate. Get creative! Eat more than one type of veggie in one meal! Play with spices, seasonings, and cooking methods. Tips for boosting your intake here and recipes for veggies that don’t suck here.

Pick your protein

Filling ¼ of your plate with high protein foods makes sure that you get enough protein, but not too much at the expense of other nutrients. Protein helps with satiety, blood sugar regulation, and maintaining muscle, but our bodies can only use so much at a time, and the rest goes to waste. On average, Americans get about twice the amount of protein they need.

Choose your carbs

Carbs should fill up to ¼ of the plate. Choose carbs that contain fiber to help with digestion, satiety, and blood sugar regulation.

Include healthy fats

Certain fats are absolutely essential for good health. Don’t fear them! Find out more about incorporating these into your diet here.

Better beverages

Unsweetened or calorie-free drinks are best. And no, we don’t mean diet soda 😉  Try water, sparkling water, unsweetened tea, etc. Trying to kick a soda habit? Check out our tips for reducing sugary beverages here.

Keep an eye on portion size

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.

That’s everything for this week!

Time to pick your goal for logging healthy habits in the Brook app:

Log blood pressure in the app at least 1 time this week
Log medication in app 3 times this week
Log 3 meals that follow the Brook Healthy Plate this week

Open the app and tell Brook’s Experts what goal you’ve chosen!

Next week we’ll cover how sodium affects blood pressure, what foods are highest in sodium, and how to counteract the effects of sodium by boosting potassium in the diet.

Chat soon!
A picture of Health Coach Emily smiling for the camera
Reviewed by Emily Matson, MS, RDN​

on August 13, 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.