Top Five Ways to Naturally Lower Blood Pressure
When it comes to high blood pressure, there is good news and bad news (and good news).
The Good News: High blood pressure is preventable with healthy lifestyle choices.
The Bad News: According to the American Heart Association, roughly 28 percent of Americans have high blood pressure, and many are not aware of it.
The Good News: Certain natural methods can help to lower blood pressure naturally and reduce risks for heart attack and stroke.
Here are five ways to naturally lower blood pressure:
- Try the Dash diet.
- Get more exercise.
- Don't smoke.
- Lose weight.
- Reduce stress levels.
A highly successful treatment for high blood pressure, Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (or the DASH diet) can help lower blood pressure in as little as two weeks, totaling as many as 14 points in reduction over time. The plan focuses on a reduction in sodium to less than 1,500 milligrams per day, and a diet consisting primarily of whole grains, legumes, fruits, vegetables, lean animal products, and small amounts of healthy fats. Caffeine, alcohol, and processed sugar are discouraged. In addition to reducing high blood pressure, research shows that the DASH diet also lowers risks for cancer, diabetes, obesity, and osteoporosis.
Fast walking, running, swimming, and cycling are enjoyable forms of aerobic exercise.
Although nicotine and tobacco can spike blood pressure temporarily, smoking itself does not cause chronic high blood pressure, according to most experts. However, activities - like heavy alcohol consumption and lack of exercise associated with smoking might be concerning. Therefore, quitting smoking might reduce blood pressure by association, in addition to providing a wide range of other health benefits.
Excess weight demands that the heart work harder, which can lead to high blood pressure. Dropping pounds can lighten the load on the heart. Time after time, research has shown that losing weight can significantly reduce blood pressure. Losing weight alone may be enough to gain control of blood pressure in people who are overweight or obese.
While managing stress may help lower blood pressure, more research is needed to determine specific plans of action. In the meantime, most experts recommend any stress management technique that a person will practice on a consistent basis.
Meditation - The purpose of meditation is to dull the chatter in the mind and give attention to the present moment. Various types of meditation involve mantras, focus on breathing, visualization, or all of these methods.
Yoga - A study from New Delhi recently found that yogic breathing could reduce blood pressure, possibly through its influence on the autonomic nervous system, which regulates digestion, heart rate, and other involuntary functions.
People who are worried about blood pressure levels should see their doctor for testing. With supervision from a doctor, lifestyle changes like those listed above can reduce blood pressure for better health and a happier life.
Finally, there are supplements you can take that may help you and your blood pressure.
Follow these tips to naturally lower your blood pressure! You'll be glad you did.