- Diseases, Disorders & Conditions
How to Reduce Your Blood Pressure
Blood Pressure Check
What is High Blood Pressure?
Blood pressure is the force on your blood vessel walls as blood flows through the arteries. Every time the heart beats the blood is pumped out of your heart, which causes the pressure to increase. Between heartbeats, the heart refills with blood and the pressure in the arteries drop.
High blood pressure is when the pressure in the arteries stay at the same level or rises instead of dropping between heartbeats. This creates excess tension in the arteries and stresses the arterial walls.
High blood pressure can cause heart attacks and aeortic aneurysms. Severe high blood pressure can cause a variety of life-threatening complications, such as bleeding or swelling in the eye, acute kidney failure, and high blood pressure encephalopathy.
13 Power Foods to Reduce Blood Pressure
The book, Lower Your Blood Pressure Naturally, recommends these thirteen items in the first week of the plan. These foods are high in calcium, magnesium, and potassium, and low in sodium.
- pork tenderloin
- red bell peppers
- sweet potatoes
- tilapia fillets
- white beans
- fat-free plain yogurt
How to Reduce Blood Pressure
Food and Eating
- Stay at a healthy weight.
- Avoid fad diets.
- Eat a low-fat, low-sodium, and moderate carbohydrate diet.
- Consider using the DASH diet (Dietary Approach to Stop Hypertension). This is promoted the the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute which is part of the National Institutes of Health. This plan reduces sodium in take and encourages consumption of nuts, whole grains, fish, poultry fruits and vegetables while lowering consumption of red meats, and sugar.
- Monitor portion sizes.
- Look for low sodium options of your favorite foods.
- Use garlic, onions, herbs and spices instead of salt to flavor your food.
- Grill, roast or steam instead of frying.
- Cook with olive oil, canola oil or flaxseed oil for sauteing and basting grilled vegetables and fish.
- Eat whole grain foods at every meal.
- Eat dark leafy greens such as spinach, broccoli, collard greens and kale.
- Eat legumes such as lentils, peas and beans.
- Read the label. The fat free label may have more sugar or salt.
- Eat fish which is high in omega-3 fatty acids.
- Drink alcohol in moderation.
- Increase intake of fruits and vegetables. They have more potassium and magnesium.
- Drink water.
- Reduce your caffeine intake if you are sensitive to it.
- Exercise regularly. Exercise will help you reduce your weight, feel better, have more energy and help reduce your blood pressure. A combination of higher-intensity interval walking, moderate walking, strength training and energizing or restorative yoga is better than any one type of exercise.
- Stretch and relax by doing yoga.
- Work with your doctor to find the right dosage and combination of medicine that will reduce your blood pressure. You may find that if you follow the steps outlined in this article, you may be able to reduce your dosage or even eliminate the medication, but be sure to consult with your doctor first.
Amazon Resources to Reduce High Blood Pressure
- Reduce stress with meditation or relaxation techniques.
- Find other ways to reduce stress, such as distancing yourself from stressful people or jobs.
- Stop smoking.
- Get enough sleep.
- Take care of yourself.
- Spend time with a pet.
- Simplify your schedule.
- Look on the bright side.
- Get a massage.
- Breathe and meditate.
- Keep a journal.
- Declutter your house.
- Don't stress the small stuff.
- Volunteer or give to a charity.
- Don't overextend yourself.
- Prioritize how you use your time.
- Schedule fun activities.
- Surround yourself with supportive people.
High blood pressure is a serious condition even though you cannot feel the harm it is doing to your body. By keeping your blood pressure under control with stress management, diet and exercise, and medication, you can hopefully live a long, healthy, and happy life.