It seems that there’s no shortage of medications for many of today’s medical maladies. In fact, popping in a pill has become second nature for many people suffering from hypertension. The sad fact however, is that these medications do not provide any long term solutions but are only effective in providing temporary relief from hypertension.
Cures need not be expensive. Choosing to live a healthy lifestyle helps prevent hypertension and goes a long way in treating hypertension. Medications are effective in lowering your high blood pressure but do not prevent it from happening in the future.
For those searching for safer and healthier alternatives to medications here are some of the best tips to lower your hypertension or high blood pressure naturally.
Shed those extra pounds
Although high blood pressure could be found in people of all shapes and sizes, people who are overweight are more likely to suffer from hypertension. Weight problems increase the risk for many medical conditions including hypertension. Even a modest reduction in weight could lower your blood pressure. Overweight people have high levels of Low Density Lipoprotein (LDL) which is responsible for
Eating healthy does not mean shunning away from an entire food group. Fatty foods for example has become so maligned that people consider it to be unhealthy. A healthy diet is a delicate balance of eating a variety of foods. Even fats play an important role in powering the many body processes. It is when people eat in excess or eliminate certain food types that eating becomes unhealthy. One more thing about eating healthy is that you don’t only take care of your body but could also save you from unnecessary expenses.
- Decrease salt intake
The amount of salt in the body is regulated by the kidney but when salt intake becomes too heavy it continues to circulate in the blood and stored in the body. Salt is responsible for controlling the amount of fluids in the body and a high level of salt means that blood vessels and the heart have to increase their workload hence, a higher blood pressure.
The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for salt is 2300 mg or less. People who are 51 years old or older are advised to take in 1500 mg or less. People with existing kidney conditions however, are recommended to lower their salt intake accordingly.
Keep track of the foods you take. Take time to read food labels. Avoid salty snacks, preserved and processed foods. Be creative in your choice of ingredients and explore using herbs and spices in your favorite dishes.
- Potassium rich foods
Eating potassium rich foods (baked potatoes, tomatoes, beans, fish, milk, fruits and vegetables) can help lower your blood pressure. Potassium is important in keeping the levels of salt in the body. Fruits and vegetables are rich sources of Potassium. It helps your kidneys become more efficient in maintaining the amount of salts circulating in the body.
- Omega 3
Omega 3 is a fatty acid that naturally lowers blood cholesterol. It prevents the buildup of blood vessel blocking cholesterol and helps in flushing them out of the body. Omega 3 keeps your blood vessels working optimally by helping blood flow freely. Rich sources of Omega 3 include fish, olive oil, flax seed oil, soy bean, pumpkin seeds and walnuts.
Garlic has long been used as a natural treatment for high blood pressure. Allicin, a compound found in garlic is mainly responsible for lowering blood pressure. It relaxes the arteries and lowers heart rate.
You don’t have to spend countless hours at the gym to be healthy. Living an active lifestyle requires no more than a few minutes of walking or running daily. You could also do simple exercises right in your working space. Parking your car a few blocks away from your office could do wonders in improving your overall health.
Avoid Unhealthy Lifestyle Habits
Smoking and inhaling second hand smoke raises your blood pressure by 10 mm Hg up to one hour. This is why medical personnel always ask if people have inhaled or smoked an hour before their blood pressure is to be taken. One of the most immediate effects of nicotine is it constricts the blood vessels. This decreases the amount of space in our blood vessels where our blood flow increasing blood pressure. It also leads to long term destruction of the delicate blood vessel linings and plaque buildup.
Alcohol when taken in small amounts daily could decrease blood pressure. One drink of alcohol or red wine in particular has beneficial effects on your blood pressure. Alcohol relaxes your blood vessels improving blood flow. Drinking another glass of wine or alcohol however, produces a different effect.
Coffee remains to be an enigma when it comes to its long term effects on blood pressure. Caffeine a stimulant has similar to nicotine the chemical found in cigarettes. Drinking coffee temporarily increases your blood pressure. Doctors advise that average daily coffee intake should be limited to two cups.
Take Time Out and Relax
Stress causes many physiological responses in the body. Our body temperature goes up, sweat breaks out and increases blood pressure. People suffering from hypertension should reduce instances of stress. Identify your stress triggers and formulate a coping mechanism. Stress causes blood vessels to constrict, restricting normal blood flow. Taking a few deep breaths is just one of the simple ways you could lower your blood pressure naturally.