Natural, Healthy Ways to Lower Blood Pressure
Lowering your blood pressure in a healthy natural way can be a lot safer and simpler than using conventional medication.
Conventional medication may have some side effects which can cause problems, and some blood pressure mediation can actually give you tremors.
There are plenty of natural remedies which can help you to lower your blood pressure, and you may not even need to pop a pill.
Many people suffer with high blood pressure, long term and short term, and there are many reason why we get high blood pressure. Blood pressure along with weight and blood sugar level content are still the best indicators of our state of health. Most people monitor their weight at home but not their blood pressure. Why not?
People who monitor their weight tend to be more health conscious and now you can buy very reliable equipment to monitor your blood pressure.
Taking your blood pressure before you get up in the morning, and when you go to bed at night is an easy way to check own your health.
What causes high blood pressure?
There are many reasons why people develop high blood pressure.
Some people are just genetically programmed to get high blood pressure, others develop it because they may suffer renal disease but most people develop high blood pressure because they are not aware of what can cause high blood pressure.
High blood pressure is primarily caused by excess weight, wrong diet, elevated blood fats such as cholesterol and triglycerides and lack of exercise.
We eat too much fat, processed food and move too little.
High blood pressure is also known as hypertension.
Symptoms of high blood pressure
There are very few symptoms of high blood pressure and this is why it is so important you monitor your blood pressure.
If you are suffering from high blood pressure you may experience one or a combination of the following symptoms:
Dizziness - whilst moving around and doing day to day things such as climbing stairs your might start feeling dizzy.
Blurred visions or double vision - this is a very common sign and is normally noticed in the morning when you get up, or after a period of rest in the evening.
Noose bleeds - if you suffer from frequent nosebleeds you should see a doctor as soon as possible. This is an indication you may suffer
from seriously high blood pressure which needs immediate attention.
Headaches - persistent headaches are also a very common sign of high blood pressure. Don't pop another aspirin, ask a health professional to check your blood pressure.
Shortness of breath - if you feel short of breath when exercising or doing simple tasks which put extra strain on your cardiovascular system you should ask for a health check. This is another common indicator of high blood pressure.
What triggers high blood pressure
There are many reason we can develop high blood pressure and this is why it should always be investigated.
The most common reason is life style which includes a diet high in fatty and processed food. Our food today contain lots of fats
and processed food is full of salt. Bad fats such as LDL cholesterol and triglycerides affect our blood pressure by damaging our arteries
and small blood vessels. They start to become brittle and inflexible, and when fatty deposits start building our arteries narrow increasing blood pressure.
Our bodies were built to move. When we don't move and exercise we neglect the biggest muscle in the body - the heart. Keeping this muscle healthy is vital for a healthy blood pressure.
Stress is a problem as well. In many ways we can't avoid stress so we need to learn how to recognize and resolve what I call the "stress problem". In many ways we are responsible for our own stress, we actually impose stress on ourselves and our bodies.
The truth is that we have no more stress today than we did during the 2nd World War. Stress is our own invention.
Diagnosis of high blood pressure
The only way high blood pressure can be diagnosed is by taking your blood pressure.
Your blood pressure consists of two values; systolic and diastolic.
Systolic pressure is the measured when you heart pushes blood out and diastolic pressure is your blood pressure in between heart beats.
A blood pressure check will look like this 120/73 mmHg.
Ideally your blood pressure should be below 120/80 mmHg, and your are considered to have high blood pressure if several readings
on separate occasions show a blood pressure over 140/90 mmHg or higher. A very high reading could indicate an immediate cardiac event such as a heart attack.
Managing blood pressure naturally
Many people come and see me in a complete panic and say "I have high blood pressure". My answer is always the same "no problem". Then I ask if they are willing to do something about it. Often the result is a horrified look as most people expect pill popping is the only answer.
I always find out what is causing the problem. Most of the time is a combination of things but mainly diet.
Diet and blood pressure - low salt and diets low in saturated fats are really important. Most people it too much read meat which is full in saturated fats which causes your triglycerides levels to rise and your LDL (bad) cholesterol to increase.
I always send people with high fat diets to the clinic for a blood test and ask them to bring back their test results for blood fats and cholesterol. On top of this I also ask for a homocysteine check.
Exercise - if you have very high blood pressure you have to be careful with exercise. Walking is always the best answer.
If someone does not exercise I always recommend them to walk on a flat surface for half an hour three times per week for two weeks. I have my own walk yourself to health program, and everybody takes away a copy. It is the most popular advise leaflet is my shop.
Relax - it is ok to relax. Many people do not relax anymore and this is crucial to our bodies. Exercise such as yoga is great, and spending time in nature is another fantastic relaxation exercise. Put down your Kindle and day dream, laugh to yourself, stroke the cat, walk the dog and above all say to yourself " You are ok". This helps you to recognize your own self worth
and accept yourself.
There are of course alternative supplements which you can use, and here are some ideas for you to try:
Fish oil - this is a great supplement as it helps the problem behind the high blood pressure. Fish oil lowers your triglyceride level
and helps your cholesterol. If you have high blood pressure take three 1000 mg capsules for the first month, and monitor your blood pressure every day. Fish oil can lower your blood pressure dramatically and after a month you will need a test for blood fats and cholesterol to determine the future course of treatment.
Vitamin B complex - the busy vitamin B group supports the nervous system and cardiovascular system. It also helps our digestive system, and it is crucial to our overall health. A large majority of high blood pressure sufferers have a serious B vitamin deficiency.
A good quality B vitamin supplement combined with fish oil is one of the best combination treatments for high blood pressure.
Potassium - potassium rich foods such as leafy greens, brussel sprouts and avocados are power houses of not only potassium but also micro nutrients.
Avocados contain quite a few calories but only eat one a day perhaps in a wholegrain sandwich with tomatoes and mayonnaise made from flax seed oil.
High potassium has been linked to lower strokes but if you have kidney problems you have to be careful with this supplement.
Nuts - not the salty ones but fresh nuts are great as they are full of vitamin E which is a powerful antioxidant and supports heart function.
Gingko Biloba - excellent supplement for improved blood flow and is safe to take as a combination treatment.
Stop smoking - if you smoke you need to stop. This is a real problem for your lungs and heart. It also raises triglycerides levels and cholesterol as the chemicals in cigarettes destroy vital nutrients.
Transfats - look out for transfats in your diet. They are mainly in processed foods they but pop up in "healthy" margarines and spreads.
Use butter in moderation, try walnut butter and olive oil is really good as it is anti-inflammatory.
Lecithin - I call this supplement a broom as it attaches itself to fat and cholesterol, and sweeps it out of the body.
Lecithin, to the disappointment of the conventional medical industry, is just as effective as statins. Remember when you lower your cholesterol level you help your blood pressure.
Eat on a regular basis - snack on healthy foods such as apples which contain pectin, and helps to lower blood pressure and balance your blood sugar level.
Iron - makes sure your iron level is right as a low iron level can cause high blood pressure.
There are many ways to lower blood pressure however the most important course of action is find out why your blood pressure is high.
The next step is to do something about, good health is not about talking. It is about taking action and doing it. Do good health and make yourself well.
Salt - a major problem
What is a healthy salt intake?
Watch out for hidden salt in foods. Processed foods are full of salt hiding under the heading sodium.
Try herbal salts and Himalayan rock salt but be careful not to overdo it.
Healthy Salt - Sodium limits
1.5 mg per day ( 2/3 of teaspoon) if you are over 50 or suffer high blood pressure.
2.3 mg per day ( 1 teaspoon) for healthy adults under 50
Exercise to lower your blood pressure
Exercise can lower your blood pressure, and at the same time help with other health problems such as raised cholesterol.
If you would like to start exercising check with your doctor first but here are some exercise tips.
Swimming - aerobic exercise makes your heart pump blood more effeciently which decreases the strain on your blood vessels and lower your blood pressure. Swimming is a good exercise for high blood pressure. If you have not swum for a while break your session in to minutes intervals. New research shows that swimming for three 10 minute intervals during a session may be more beneficial than swimming for a complete 30 minutes.
Yoga - yoga is an excellent exercise as it incorporates breathing techniques. Learning to breath right is really important when you are trying to reduce or control your blood pressure. Yoga is also excellent for building muscle tone as it uses resistance training. The more muscle we have the better the better our bodies can take in oxygen. The slower you breathe during a yoga session the more you will be able to lower your own blood pressure. Learn how to listen to your breath, and you will notice the difference between an excited breath and a relaxed breath. When you are relaxed your body will be absorbing more oxygen and oxygen helps to lower blood pressure.
Walk - getting into the habit of walking can be difficult. If you can start by walking for 20 minutes every day. Walk slowly for the first five minutes, faster for the next five, slow for another five and finish with a five minute brisk walk with your arms swinging.