ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Healing High Blood Pressure & Hypertension Naturally

Updated on September 30, 2009

Potential factors in the development of high blood pressure:

  • Increasing age
  • Decrease in activity levels
  • Increased stress
  • High alcohol intake
  • High sodium diet
  • Excess caffeine
  • Smoking
  • Genetic predisposition
  • It’s more common in men than women & more common in African-Americans
  • Kidney disease
  • Hormonal disorders
  • Long term lead exposure (heavy metals)
  • Oral contraceptives & corticosteroids usage

High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)

High blood pressure (or hypertension, which is persistent high blood pressure) affects at least 1 in 5 Americans. It can cause damage to the heart, arteries, kidneys, and eyes, sometimes leading to strokes or heart attacks. While our blood pressure is designed to rise, it is also designed to lower. For example it rises during exercise or stressful situations and lowers during rest.

High blood pressure is almost solely a lifestyle and diet disorder. Industrialized countries with stress, toxicity, and poor eating habits are one of the few things that all hypertension patients have in common. Individuals in remote areas of New Guinea, Panama, Brazil, China, and Africa have no traces of high blood pressure regardless of age and yet when relocated to an industrialized area, hypertension crept into their health statistics.

Specific Foods

  • Celery: 4 ribs a day has shown a 12-14% decrease in blood pressure levels. For some, this has been enough to prevent their need to take medication. There is also a celery seed extract that can be helpful.
  • Avocados and asparagus: rich in L-glutathione (amino acid) which scavenges for harmful free radicals
  • Garlic & onions: significantly reduce blood pressure
  • Oatmeal: even one ounce cooked per day lowered blood pressure compared to those who didn’t


Things You Can Do To Help Yourself

Self-Help:

If you or someone you love has high blood pressure, there are things that you can do to take back control of your health!

  • Consume less salt and saturated fats

One study showed that the reduction of salt to 5g per day had a significant effect in blood pressure levels for individuals who had high blood pressure and those who did not. You can eliminate high salt products by not consuming foods in bags, boxes, and other packaged goods. Instead choose fresh, “real” food and cook without using salt (or very little).

  • Consume more vegetables, fruit and oily fish
  • Increase potassium levels

By increasing potassium, sodium is lowered. A potassium-rich diet has plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables. Combined with a low-sodium diet, a potassium-rich diet can lower blood pressure levels. Try avocados, bananas, and whole grains, food-based supplements like Vital-K or Bio-K, and salt-substitutes NuSalt or Nu-Salt, which provide 530mg of potassium per one-sixth of a teaspoon.

  • Reduce caffeine

Coffee consumption increases blood pressure, contributing to hypertension. One study showed that the average 5 cups per day contributed to the increase in blood pressure. This blood pressure increase due to caffeine is greater in younger individuals.

  • Drink alcohol in moderation (no more than 21 units for men per week, 14 for women
  • Stop smoking
  • Breathe.

Slow, yoga-type breathing has been proven as effective as medication in lowering blood pressure in mild hypertensive cases. The movements in yoga have also contributed to the reduction in blood pressure, enough to eliminate or reduce the use of medication altogether.

  • Use biofeedback

Try HeartMath or seek out a biofeedback practitioner, as it has been proven to reduce blood pressure levels and maintain them over extended periods of time. You will benefit from the relaxation strategies as well as the empowerment.

  • Move – take a walk, bike ride, yoga class, anything to keep your body moving
  • Reduce exposure to lead

Lead toxicity has been seen in enough hypertension cases to be considered a contributing factor. You can reduce your exposure by taking action now: reduce exposure to lead paint in older homes, run water for at least a minute to avoid lead solder in the pipes, filter your drinking water (always!), do not drink or eat out of leaded crystal or improperly glazed ceramics, make sure supplements like calcium are lead-free, and be cautious when using lead for soldering. Vitamins C, B6, and calcium help remove lead and other heavy metals from the body. You can also have your heavy metal toxicity levels tested by a qualified holistic nutrition professional. Contact me if you would like a test.


Cautionary Advice

Medication doesn’t always work and has serious side effects. One professional in the field of health says that once medication has been chosen, people tend to need it for life. Whether you’re on medication for life or want to get off of it, please consider some of the cautions below.

Vitamins:

  • Magnesium should be monitored (no more than 300mg per day) if someone is taking spironolactone (a potassium-saving diuretic for edema and high blood pressure). This medicine may prevent the loss of potassium and magnesium, so all supplementation should be closely monitored.
  • Quercetin should not be taken by individuals who are also taking felodipine (for high blood pressure); quercetin may inhibit the breakdown of the drug, thereby increasing the blood levels of the drug in the body, leading to side-effects.
  • Vitamin D, while incredibly therapeutic, should not be taken by people who are taking erapamil (used for angina, arrhythmia, and high blood pressure).

Herbs:

  • Coltsfoot (Tussilago farfara) may interfere with blood pressure treatment when taken in large doses. Should not be used long term.
  • Siberian Ginseng (Eleutherococcus senticosus) and American Ginseng (Panax quinquefolius) may increase blood pressure, though it’s rare.
  • Licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra) can cause abnormalities in potassium and should not be taken by individuals with high blood pressure.
  • Schisandra (schisandra chineensis) should be avoided by those with hypertension.

Supplements & Herbs to Consider

Always consult your physician before beginning a treatment program, especially if you are taking any medication.

SUPPLEMENTS

  • Calcium (helps most in individuals whose blood pressure is salt-sensitive): 1000mg per day for 12 weeks.
  • Magnesium: 300-500mg per day. (The calculation is 12mg of magnesium per kilogram of body weight – or per 2.2 pounds.) Please note that magnesium-aspartate, -malate, -succinate, -fumarate, and –citrate are easier to absorb and digest than others (-oxide, -gluconate, -sulfate, or -chloride).
  • Coenzyme Q10: 50mg twice a day. Approximately 4 out of 10 people with high blood pressure are deficient in CoQ10. This supplement has shown reductions of 10%.
  • Fish oil supplements: 3g daily (modestly lowers blood pressure)
  • Flaxseed oil (instead of fish oil) in some cases is cheaper and effective: 1 TBSP per day has shown drops in systolic and diastolic readings by up to 9 points.

HERBS

  • Cramp bark (Viburnum opulus): antispasmodic, relaxes muscles in the walls of the arteries
  • Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale): traditionally used and clinically proven to be a diuretic that helps reduce blood pressure. This diuretic will not contribute to potassium-loss like conventional medicine because it is rich in potassium itself.
  • Garlic: increases the elasticity of the arterial wall.
  • Hawthorn (Crataegus spp.): food for the heart, contains antioxidants, dilates the blood vessels, and is particularly helpful in treating hypertension associated with atherosclerosis. This is used in Europe for the cardiovascular benefits. If you purchase it, it should contain 10% procyanidins or 1.8% vitexin-4’-rhamnoside. Take 250mg 3 times per day. Wait 2-4 weeks to see results.
  • Linden flowers (Tilia europea): diaphoretic (promotes sweating) and relaxant; has the potential to lower systolic blood pressure.
  • Mushrooms (Maitake & Reishi): Maitake mushrooms strengthen health and have healing abilities when applied to hypertension, showing a gradual reduction. Reishi mushrooms, “the elixir of immortality” is confirmed by research to be a cardiotonic. Take the extract 3 times a day for 4 weeks to experience the significant drop in blood pressure that participants did.

Homeopathy has also been proven effective in treating hypertension (consult a homeopath for more information).

For more information & free resources, visit http://www.freedomfromdiets.com !

In peace and health,

Theresa

References

Goldberg, B. (2002). Alternative Medicine: The Definitive Guide. Celestial Arts: Berkeley, CA

Murray, M. (2000). Dr. Murray’s Total Body Tune-Up: Bantam Books, NY, NY.

Pelletier, K. R. (2007). New Medicine: DK Publishing, NY, NY.


Best Choices

Vital Choice Wild Alaskan Sockeye Salmon Oil, Omega-3, 1000mg, 180-Count
Vital Choice Wild Alaskan Sockeye Salmon Oil, Omega-3, 1000mg, 180-Count

This is the best choice in fish oils! Find out more at: http://www.vitalchoice.com

 

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • greentidings profile image

      greentidings 

      7 years ago from www.greentidings.org

      Nice article- let's get away from those meds with terrible side effects if we can! Also, apple cider vinegar works well.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)