While many people with high blood pressure take medication for it, there are many natural alternatives that a person can employ to help them lower their high blood pressure and/or the amount of medication they need to take for it. The key factors when it comes to controlling high blood pressure naturally are weight, diet, exercise, and stress.
Weight is a crucial factor, as being overweight or obese puts you at greater risk of developing high blood pressure. However, as to be expected, losing weight, even a few pounds, has been proven to lower your blood pressure. You may be wondering, “Then what are the best ways to help lose and keep off excess weight.” Well, it’s the obvious answer: exercise and eating right.
One diet that is recommended by doctors and nutritionists for people with high blood pressure is the DASH diet; DASH stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension. The DASH diet consists of eating a lot of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and low- or no-fat dairy products, while abstaining from red meat, sweets, and foods with high levels of cholesterol and fat.
A variation of this diet also includes cutting down on foods with high levels of sodium, so that you don’t consume more than 1500 mg of sodium per day, (that’s a little more than half a teaspoon of salt). The DASH diet is considered valuable in controlling high blood pressure naturally, as the combination of nutrients working together leads to a noticeable lowering of blood pressure within a few weeks.
I think it goes without saying that exercise is also very important in learning how to control your blood pressure, and it’s recommended that if you have high blood pressure, you should try to exercise at least three times a week for twenty to thirty minutes (of course, you should check with your doctor to see if it’s ok to exercise if you think you might have some problems doing so).
Exercise is helpful in lowering high blood pressure, as it helps you lose weight and manage your stress, and also helps strengthen the muscles of your heart. Moderate types of exercise such as walking or jogging are recommended, as well as more relaxing activities such as yoga or tai chi.
Finally, some other ways concerning controlling high blood pressure naturally are to remove the bad things you put into your body and replace them with healthier alternatives. You should cut back on alcohol and caffeine, and quit smoking if you do smoke.
Having one drink or so a day is helpful though, as moderate amounts of alcohol have been shown to reduce heart disease, so having that cliché glass of red wine after dinner may help you. Try to drink a lot of water and eat foods with potassium and magnesium in them, and try replacing salt with herbs and spices, as some of them have health benefits as well.