150 million Americans suffer from hypertension, and up to 1000 people die from it per day! 50% of young adults between the age of 24-32 are undiagnosed, blind to the symptoms of this deadly disease.
Of those who are diagnosed, about 50% have their blood pressure under control through proper nutrition, stress management, exercise and medication. Many sufferers are not aware of how much control they have over their condition, and feel hopelessly lost in the high statistics for an impending heart attack, stroke, kidney failure and heart failure.
But there’s good news! Studies have proven that there are multiple, easy-to-implement ways to immediately start lowering blood pressure, and to reduce the risk of diseases associated with it. It can be as simple as walking, having a glass of red wine a few times a week, listening to music, working a little less and consciously making the effort to breathe deeper: it doesn’t sound so bad does it?
Here are natural 10 ways to lower blood pressure:
- Go for Brisk Walks
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has reported that just 20 minutes of brisk walking daily can reduce blood pressure by as much as 7%, as well as increasing life span by as much as 33%. Walking and moderate exercise releases endorphins, which are the happy hormones in our brains, stimulating a reduction in stress, an increase in circulation and a reduced blood pressure.
- Watch Your Salt Intake
Sodium plays an incredible role in the balance of blood pressure, which makes salt its number one enemy. Just half a teaspoon a day meets the maximum daily allowance for a healthy body, which makes it a good idea to invest in a low sodium herbal salt or to rely on vinegar, lemon juice and celery to get your salty fix.
- Have a Bit of Wine
Excessive alcohol consumption is detrimental to health, but studies have proven than one glass of wine per day can actually be highly beneficial for us. Having half to one glass of wine daily helps to reduce stress, lower blood pressure and reduces the risk of heart disease significantly.
Research has proven that yoga can help to lower blood pressure because it significantly reduces stress, as well as stabilizing the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system. While yoga looks really easy, it’s actually quite a challenging form of physical exercise that will have you stretching, sweating and increasing your heart rate: this improves circulation, strengthens the heart and leads to an overall reduction in blood pressure.
- Manage Your Work Load
Working for more than 40 hours per week has a significant negative impact on your health: just 41 hours per week increases your risk of developing hypertension by as much as 15%. 8 or more hours of sitting equates to a 90% increase in the risk of heart disease, stroke and chronic hypertension, which makes it important to prioritize your health far above your work.
- Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate
As much as 75% of all Americans may suffer from chronic dehydration, as studies reveal, and most of us are clearly not even aware of it. Dehydration leads to a sluggish system, poor blood flow, increased blood pressure and a poorly functioning body. Get at least 8 glasses, 2 liters or half a gallon of water per day for reduced blood pressure and better health immediately.
- Reduce Your Caffeine Intake
Caffeine causes an increase in blood pressure for up to 6 hours, as it tightens up arteries, increases stress and causes the heart to work harder than it should. Switch to decaf or drink herbal teas: your heart will thank you for it.
Studies have proven that just two squares of dark chocolate taken daily can have a remarkable effect on blood pressure: it promotes the elasticity of blood vessels and releases chemicals in the brain that trigger relaxation, reducing the symptoms and risk of hypertension in every delicious bite.
- Eat Potassium Rich Foods
Potassium is an essential mineral which helps to relax arteries and balance fluid levels in the body: this results in lower blood pressure. Potatoes, bananas, beans, dark leafy greens, fish and avocados are all excellent sources of potassium.
- Shed Some Layers
Weight gain is often associated with a direct increase in blood pressure, which makes it important to manage. Regular exercise, a high fiber diet, reduced fat intake and plenty of fluids can help you shed some layers, and subsequently result in lowered blood pressure. Just 30 minutes a day can make all the difference.
Disclaimer: Hypertension is a serious medical condition, which should be addressed with a medical professional. There are multiple supplements and medications available to assist you in your journey of recovery: our tips will increase the rate of your improvement.