According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) about 32%, or 1 in 3 Americans experiences high blood pressure (BP), a condition called hypertension. Then, only half of hypertensive Americans have their high blood pressure under control.
Take a few minutes to learn about blood pressure so that you can get yours checked out and understand what to do if it’s high. High blood pressure can severely damage your heart over time, so it’s important to keep your blood pressure at a healthy level.
These natural ways to lower your blood pressure can be helpful for those who want to stay away from medication, or to those whose medication isn’t lowering blood pressure on its own. A healthier lifestyle will lead to lower blood pressure, so many of these suggestions are great ways to improve your health in multiple ways.
These tips to lower your blood pressure naturally are ways that you can be proactive in improving your heart health.
About Blood Pressure and Hypertension
Let’s learn a little more about blood pressure before we begin. According to the American Heart Association, there are five levels used to report blood pressure:
There are two numbers associated with blood pressure. The first number represents systolic blood pressure, which means the amount of pressure exerted on your arteries when your heart beats. A healthy systolic reading is lower than 120.
The second blood pressure number represents diastolic blood pressure, the pressure within arteries between heartbeats, when the heart is resting. Normal diastolic blood pressure is 80 or below.
Fewer than half of the people who have hypertension have it under control. It can stretch and damage your arteries. It can also cause heart disease, heart failure, stroke, kidney damage, vision loss, memory loss, etc. According to the Mayo Clinic, high blood pressure is more of a risk as you get older.
These natural ways to lower your blood pressure are a great start to lowering your high blood pressure in addition to any other actions your doctor wishes you to take. Becoming healthier is a key part of lowering blood pressure. This article is not a substitute for medical advice.
How to Lower Your Blood Pressure Naturally
1. Regular Exercise
We hate to hear it, but one of the best natural prescriptions for high blood pressure is good old exercise. If your blood pressure is elevated or you are hypertensive, you might have already been advised by your doctor to start taking evening walks or beginning another form of exercise.
Keeping your heart in shape by exercising more often helps it pump blood more easily, which lessens the amount of pressure exerted on the arteries.
Becoming more active has been found to lower peoples’ systolic blood pressure (the top number) by four to nine mm of Hg. This equivalent to the effects of some blood pressure medications. There is no doubt that the simplest solution to high blood pressure is plain exercise.
2. Reduce or Eliminate the Use of Chemicals Such as Nicotine, Caffeine, and Alcohol
Another obvious way to improve your health and therefore lower blood pressure is to eliminate chemicals from your body.
When we ingest too much of these chemicals, our blood pressure can suffer. Start making healthier choices when it comes to your vices.
For example, drink a cup of tea instead of coffee, ask your doctor for help in quitting smoking and practice more self-control when drinking alcohol. Your blood pressure will thank you.
3. Watch Your Diet
Diets high in fat, carbohydrates and sodium can raise blood pressure and damage arteries. Though changing your diet can be difficult, it’s worth it to lower your blood pressure.
Focus on eating whole grains, fruits and vegetables to lower your blood pressure. Avoid fat and cholesterol, and your blood pressure reading could be reduced by 11 mg Hg, according to the Mayo Clinic.
4. Take CBD
Cannabidiol (CBD) has been found to reduce the high-blood pressure response to stress. In a randomized study, scientists administered CBD to those at a resting blood pressure and found that it lowered systolic levels, even though it increased subjects’ heartrates.
CBD derived from hemp must contain less than 0.3% THC to be legal in the U.S. it’s legal for consumption because it doesn’t get you high. Using the CBD component from hemp plants is a great way to lower your blood pressure naturally.
5. Use Natural Herbal Remedies
About 75-80% of people in the world rely mainly on herbs to solve their health problems because of the lowered risk of side effects and better acceptance by the body.
Garlic has been found to decrease BP in those who have a raised systolic blood pressure reading, but not in those with normal systolic blood pressure. Celery seeds reduce blood pressure significantly. Lavender has lowered BP and heart rates in tests on anesthetized rats.
Herbs are natural ways to achieve desired health effects. Make sure to speak with your doctor about any herbs you’d like to add to your diet for medical reasons.
6. Deep Breathing and Meditation
Your heart beats faster in response to stressful situations. Find ways to eliminate some of the stressful things in your life or find better ways of dealing with them.
Deep breathing is one of the central ways to decrease stress levels and therefore decrease your blood pressure. By taking some time (preferably 10-15 minutes per day) to focus on your breathing, you can greatly reduce your stress levels and in turn lower your blood pressure.
One exercise advises you to inhale for four seconds to take a deep breath, and then exhale for four seconds to finish the breath. Repeating this activity can regulate your blood pressure if it’s high.
Meditation can be added to deep breathing, as a way to relax naturally through visualization or an empty mind. Guided breathing or meditation practices can be a great way to take a break and relax, lowering your blood pressure.
There are Alternatives to Blood Pressure Medication
No doubt, there are more natural ways to lower your blood pressure out there. By now, you should realize that your heart health depends on healthy blood pressure, and we’ve given you a few ways to work toward healthy blood pressure along with your medical plan.
If you’re curious about your blood pressure now, stop at one a blood pressure kiosk inside Kroger or Wal-Mart and check your own blood pressure. If you’re like me, you might find out that you have elevated blood pressure (more than one time) from stress and anxiety.
If you receive elevated readings in a self-service kiosk, make an appointment with your doctor. You should seek medical advice if you think you might be experiencing high blood pressure.
Whether you take a medication for blood pressure and you’re looking for added ways to lower your blood pressure, or you have healthy blood pressure and want to know how to keep it that way, you should now have a better idea of ways to improve your health.