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Under Pressure

Should people with high blood pressure eat freeze-dried meals?

Question:

What food can someone with high blood pressure pack? Most freeze-dried dinners have a lot of sodium.

Submitted by - Anna, Columbus, OH

Answer:

A lot depends on whether or not you’re taking meds for high blood pressure and, if so, how well they are working. I was diagnosed with high blood pressure a few years ago, and my meds work really well, so I sometimes eat freeze-dried dinners on the trail. For breakfast I usually pack oatmeal, granola, or bagels (and coffee!). I like pita bread and cheese for lunch, with dried fruit and sometimes jerky, though I do look for the low-sodium brands. I also make a trail mix with unsalted nuts. Dinners are usually pasta and cheese or instant rice and cheese. I’ve been slicing fresh veggies small and packing them. They’ll last for several days, especially if it isn’t too hot. I often pack in frozen meat for the first night. I also suggest you chat with your favorite local doc, who might also have recommendations.  —Buck

1 Comment

  1. Sarah Kirkconnell

    Brandwise the only ones that have reasonable levels is Mary Jane’s. Even on meds NO ONE and NO ONE needs to be consuming 1500 to 3500 mg of sodium in one bag of food (which many of the brands can have that much).

    Make your own meals! It is easy! It saves you $, you eat better and you can customize it.

    (Hiking happily with well controlled BP for the past 5 years!)

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