Do you suffer from high blood pressure? High blood pressure, also known as hypertension, means that the pressure in your bloodstream is much higher than it should be. Your system is under pressure and increasing its internal tension.
What Causes High Blood Pressure?
It’s a common problem and often the result of poor nutrition and lack of physical activity, but can also be caused by numerous other conditions. You will be particularly at risk of high blood pressure if you eat too much salt (especially if you are genetically predisposed), drink alcohol a lot, smoke or consume too much caffeine.
If you do have high blood pressure, there’s no need to worry immediately. Your doctor will be able to help you come up with the best treatment plan to solve the issue, and there are lots of natural remedies you can use to gradually get your blood pressure back down to its optimum level.
Here are 10 fantastic natural remedies that can help you return your blood pressure to its natural, efficient level:
1. Lose weight.
While this is easier said than done, losing weight is the best way to reduce high blood pressure. Even small amounts of weight loss can significantly reduce your blood pressure. However, beware of crash diets as they can do more harm than good. For the best results, ensure you follow a healthy life long nutritional plan with appropriate calories that includes physical exercise.
Unsure if you need to lose weight? Men with waist measurements over 40 inches should consider losing weight while women may need to take action at over 35 inches. Have your body composition checked as soon as possible!
2. Eat more magnesium.
Magnesium is just one of what seem like endless nutrients your body needs to stay healthy. You can get a good dose of magnesium by eating more green veggies. When you eat more veggies, your blood pressure goes down which reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease.
This goes hand in hand with eating more fruit, which gives your body the nutrients it needs, lowers cholesterol and also helps you lose weight.
3. Get more physical activity.
It doesn’t matter whether you walk more, run regularly, go for a cycle or visit the gym – exercise is important! The more you exercise, the lower your blood pressure. By doing just 30 minutes of exercise each day, you can reduce your blood pressure by anywhere from 4-9 mm Hg.
The average blood pressure is 120/80 mm Hg, but can range anywhere from 90/60 mm Hg to 130/80 mm Hg. If your blood pressure is only slightly higher than it should be (above 140/90mmHg), known as pre-hypertension, exercising can stop you from getting to a stage where you have full hypertension.
So think about getting out more, and if you have a job that involves a lot of sitting, try cycling or walking to work if you can.
4. Drink less alcohol.
Alcohol in small doses provides some health benefits, and can even lower your blood pressure – but when you binge drink, it has the opposite effect. Not only that, but alcohol can reduce the effectiveness of any medication you might be taking to help reduce your blood pressure and contribute to weight gain.
Moderate drinking is recommended to ensure your blood pressure is kept under control. Recommended servings is two drinks a day for men under 65 years and one for women and men over 65.
5. Drink less coffee.
Drinking less coffee will help reduce blood pressure, as will drinking less caffeine generally. If you rarely consume caffeine, you can see an increase in 10 mm Hg if you begin drinking it as caffeine causes a dramatic spike in blood pressure.
Try and avoid caffeine as much as possible, or cut it out completely if you’re struggling with hypertension. In some cases, people have genetics that cannot manage caffeine well at all.
6. Eat more garlic.
Garlic has been shown in numerous studies to lower blood pressure and do wonders for your heart. The root contains the likes of allicin, which is a sulfur-containing compound released when garlic is crushed or broken down. It’s thought that allicin may reduce the narrowing of arteries, and in turn reduces blood pressure.
7. Eat more fatty acids.
Omega 3 fatty acids are really important for the body, helping cell regeneration and the growth of healthy hair. Fatty acids also help maintain a healthy blood pressure level.
Research has shown that the omega 3 fatty acid, known as DHA, taken in combination with Omega 6 essential fatty acids, such as primrose, or flaxseed oil can help reduce blood pressure and protect your heart. Consuming lots of fish and other foods containing DHA is a great preventative of high blood pressure, when combined with a generally healthy lifestyle, a balanced diet and regular exercise.
8. Eat chocolate.
So, the advice here isn’t to ‘eat more chocolate’, but to simply eat chocolate. We all know that excessive consumption of pretty much anything, including chocolate, is bad for us.
However, numerous studies have shown that cocoa products and dark chocolate in particular, can lower blood pressure due to the presence of flavanols, a chemical that widens blood vessels. Though, you must watch the sugar content in your choice of chocolate!
If you consume around 50g of dark chocolate per day, studies show that you could achieve a 2 or 3 mm Hg reduction in your blood pressure. Make sure, however, you are eating chocolate with a large amount of cocoa and minimal dairy contents and sugar as this will simply add to your problem by aiding weight gain.
9. Consume more vitamin D.
Vitamin D can be consumed by eating eggs and fish (sardines), but can also be created in the body when you expose yourself to sunlight. If you spend a lot of time indoors, a vitamin D deficiency could be contributing to your high blood pressure.
A simple solution to this is eat more fish and eggs, and spend more time outdoors. Studies aren’t conclusive, but vitamin D should definitely be considered an important part of a healthy lifestyle.
10. Swap coffee for green tea.
Along with drinking less coffee, why not swap it for green tea? Some studies have shown that green tea catechins are able to reduce blood pressure and cholesterol, while the antioxidants in the tea give you a nice health boost as well.
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It’s a healthy alternative and delicious too – it’s a win-win!
A good healthy lifestyle is the best way to reduce blood pressure! Manage your lifestyle and stress level and the ill effects of high blood pressure is something you will not have to endure!
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