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How do you naturally lower blood pressure during pregnancy?

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ModernMom lists a variety of foods that help expectant women lower blood pressure naturally during pregnancy, including chocolate, bananas, fish and oranges. Nutrients in these foods lower blood pressure in various ways, such as by decreasing fluid retention and inflammation, expanding constricted arteries and relaxing blood vessels, according to Kent Holtorf, M.D.

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High blood pressure affects between 6 and 8 percent of pregnancies in the United States and is more likely to occur in first-time pregnancies, women under age 20 or over age 40, obese women, or women carrying multiple babies, according to ModernMom. The effects of high blood pressure during pregnancy range from mild to severe, according to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, and may cause serious complications, such as low birth weight, early delivery or preeclampsia.

In addition to incorporating foods that lower blood pressure naturally, it is recommended to keep sodium levels in check. The American Heart Association states that sodium causes the body to retain fluid, thereby increasing the heart's workload. The normal recommended daily intake of sodium is 2,300 milligrams. The Mayo Clinic also suggests staying active during pregnancy, avoiding alcohol and smoking, and visiting a professional healthcare provider regularly for prenatal checkups.

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