6 Natural Ways to Reduce Blood Pressure Featured
A trip to the doctor for a chat about your high blood pressure will probably result in a prescription for blood pressure tablets, but whilst medication can be effective in reducing high blood pressure, you may end up suffering some nasty side effects. A far better way to lower blood pressure and reduce your risk of a heart attack, stroke and kidney failure is to try a few natural methods instead. So if you suffer from high blood pressure, here are a few tips to help you keep it down.
Eat a Healthy Diet
Eating a healthy diet to improve overall health and wellbeing is hardly rocket science, but it is surprising how many people fail to take this into account. Ditching the junk food and saturated fat and switching to wholegrains, fruit and vegetables, and potassium rich foods has been shown to significantly lower blood pressure.
Exercise is good for us. Unfortunately, modern lifestyles mean we are far more sedentary than we ought to be. People with high blood pressure usually see an improvement when they begin to take regular exercise. This doesn’t mean you need to start training for a marathon: even taking a brisk walk for 30 minutes, two or three times a week, will make a difference. Other good exercises to try include swimming, dancing and cycling.
Reduce Salt Consumption
We all consume too much salt in our diets because it is hidden in all kinds of foods. Reducing salt consumption will lead to lower blood pressure, particularly in older people. To do this the easy way, stop adding salt to your meals and avoid processed foods where possible.
Eat Dark Chocolate
Dark chocolate tastes fantastic. It also contains flavonols, which can reduce blood pressure. Try not to over-indulge, however, as any benefit will be lost. A small chunk of a minimum 70% cocoa rich chocolate eaten daily is enough.
Improve Your Life-Work Balance
High blood pressure is often a side effect of stress, but it is hard not to get totally stressed out when working all hours and juggling the demands of family life at the same time. In an ideal world you should look for a less stressful job, but this may not be possible. Instead, ask other people to help out more and try and achieve a better life-work balance that includes taking some ‘me time’ at least once a week.
Take Up Yoga
Yoga is a fantastic stress-busting activity. Practicing yoga will help to teach you breathing exercises and the art of meditation. This will reduce stress hormones and decrease blood pressure. For best results, practice yoga on a daily basis, and if you are not familiar with the various yoga poses, sign up for a yoga class and start learning.
There are lots of other natural ways to lower blood pressure, including losing weight and switching to decaf coffee and tea, but if your blood pressure is dangerously high, listen to your doctor’s advice and take your blood pressure tablets (if these have been prescribed to you).
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