Blood pressure is one of the key indicators of overall health. Some folks have high blood pressure (hypertension) and others have low blood pressure (hypotension). Both categories are signals to the doctor as to what is going on in your body. High blood pressure is a serious health concern and can lead to several health threats such as heart attack, stroke, kidney failure, vision loss and more. It is common practice to be prescribed a medication to help lower your blood pressure. But what if you could do more to help lower it in a natural way? This article will cover the top 10 ways to naturally lower your blood pressure. Let’s take a look and see what you can put into practice today.
Here’s to Your Health
1. Lose those extra pounds
Research has shown that losing just a small amount of weight can dramatically lower blood pressure. If you are carrying extra weight, it is making your heart work harder. Losing weight may be the key to getting your high blood pressure under control.
2. Exercise on a regular basis
Losing seems to be the key to a lot of health issues. This simple tip can lower your blood pressure dramatically. Start with a 20-minute walk every day. Overtime, increase your speed and your distance. Soon you will be walking briskly for 30 minutes every day and improving your heart health.
3. Eat healthy, non-processed foods
Clean eating is choosing foods that are not processed; whole foods such as vegetables, grains, fruits, and nuts. If your dinner comes in a box or can it is processed which means a lot of extra sodium, sugar and preservatives. It is healthier for you to get your nutrition from real food and not all those chemical additives that come in the box.
4. Add herbs to your diet
Herbs are excellent additions to your daily diet. It has been shown the following herbs can assist in lowering your blood pressure.
- Cinnamon: Lowers the insulin circulating in the blood stream which helps lower blood pressure, especially in diabetics.
- Garlic: A natural diuretic which flushes out sodium and water from your body.
- Flaxseed: Antioxidant, full of omega-3 fatty acids, protects against heart disease.
- Ginger: Improves circulation and relaxes muscles around blood vessels.
5. Cut down on alcohol consumption
Studies have shown drinking more than two alcoholic beverages per day increases blood pressure in both men and women. Reserve your drinking to just special occasions. Drink alcohol only with a meal.
6. Cut down on caffeine intake
If you have hypertension it is best to limit your caffeine intake to two cups a day. This can be in the form of coffee, tea or cola beverages.
7. Reduce your stress
Managing stress is easier said than done. However, there are a few things you can do. Cut down the number of hours you work. Take regular breaks during work. Breathing exercises such as found in yoga have been shown to help manage stress and lower blood pressure. Practice mindfulness or meditation.
8. Increase your sleep
If you are like most of us, getting 8 hours of sleep is difficult to do. However, sleeping at least 8 hours a night can help lower your blood pressure because it helps to lower your stress. Don’t watch television in your bedroom. Use room darkening shades. Incorporate some white noise such as a fan. These things can help you sleep longer and better.
9. Delight in the sun
Sun is a significant source of vitamin D. As more of us are spending long hours inside working, we are deficient in vitamin D. Try to get direct sunlight for 5-10 minutes a day on your arms, legs, face and hands. The easiest way is to take a walk in the sun. This gets “two birds with one stone” – exercise and sunshine!
Research shows those who volunteer a few hours per week are less likely to have high blood pressure than those who do not. This activity helps to reduce stress, give back to your community and make great connections with people. Basically, it makes you feel good about yourself and your contribution.
These 10 ways to naturally lower your blood pressure are easy additions to your daily routine. Some of these are fun and some just make good sense. Word of caution: Please check with your doctor before initiating any of these ideas. Do not stop taking any blood pressure medication until your doctor gives the go ahead. Be well!