High blood pressure or hypertension is whereby the pressure of your blood against the arteries is very high. This condition increases the risks of heart diseases and stroke. This has been reported to be the number one killer of most Americans.
The higher the blood pressure on the walls of arteries, the higher the risks of developing heart disease.
If your blood pressure reads above 130/80 mm Hg then you have high blood pressure.
8 methods to lower high blood pressure
Here are the methods you can use to lower high blood pressure;
- Increase exercise
- Reduce weight if you are overweight
- Reduce alcohol
- Reduce caffeine intake
- Quit smoking
- Minimize stress
- Reduce feasting on processed foods
- Reduce sodium consumption and increase potassium
Regular exercise plays a bigger role in lowering blood pressure. Involving yourself in exercise for over 100 minutes per week will help you in getting back your normal level if diagnosed with high blood pressure.
Exercises like simple walking on a daily basis while going to work or just around the compound, cycling, jogging, swimming and involving yourself in garden work can help you to lower high blood pressure by over 5 units.
A report in the year 2013 by the American Heart Association(AHA) and American College of Cardiology(ACC) recommended individuals to participate in moderate to vigorous activities for 40 minutes a day for approximately 3 or 4 days a week in order to lower high blood pressure.
Reduce weight if you are overweight
Being overweight has been linked to being another contributor to high blood pressure. If you check very well on most people who are being troubled by high blood pressure, you will find that over 80% of them are overweight and some have belly fat too.
Reducing weight by even 1kg can make your blood pressure to drop by approximately 1 mm Hg.
High blood pressure is sometimes being caused by heavy fat deposits in the arteries and therefore if you lose some weight, the fats will be broken down slowly and the arteries will open up.
There are several diet plans that have been developed by several people that have been seen to be able to help in weight loss. One of those diets is the keto diet. You can check all of them in the links below and read their instructions carefully and decide which diet plan is appropriate for you to lose weight.
In losing weight, your diet is the first thing you need to check, then you can add other factors that can help in weight loss like exercise.
Excessive alcohol drinking has been linked to rising incidences of blood pressure. The recommendation for alcohol consumption is one drink a day for women and two drinks for men. Drinking alcohol using that procedure helps in lowering blood pressure.
If you drink alcohol excessively, be ready to get a 1mm Hg increase per drink you add to the top of the recommended drinking volume per gender.
Reduce caffeine intake
Caffeine intake has been seen to be able to raise blood pressure by over 5mm Hg. However, this increase in has been found to be temporary as it can last for approximately 30 – 60 minutes but this still depends on an individual.
People who rarely consume caffeine have been found to be highly affected by this than those who consume caffeine on a daily basis.
It has also been found that the effects of caffeine can be very worse if you already have high blood pressure.
People who are highly sensitive to caffeine can resort to decaffeinated drinks to reduce the incidences of an increase in blood pressure.
Cutting back on caffeine consumption can help to lower your high blood pressure, though long term results for this have not been found yet.
Cigarette smoking has been found to be another big contributor to high blood pressure though it is perceived to be temporary.
Smoking cigarettes increases your heartbeat and blood pressure.
Long term smoking can lead to damages of the blood vessels and hardening of arteries, thus narrowing them.
Quitting smoking has been associated with the ability to lower blood pressure and increase longevity.
Stress is very common nowadays and all this is brought about by different factors such as family expectations, finances, work and other stress triggers such as relationships.
Stress can contribute to high blood pressure in many ways including how you react to it. If you react to stress by eating unhealthy foods then blood pressure will rise. There is another thing that I have observed in most stressed people, they take their stress to alcohol and consume it excessively. This is very risky for your health. Instead of doing these unhealthy habits, try practicing the best stress-relieving methods.
To relieve stress you can either take a walk, talk to friends whom you know will not stress you and also try avoiding stress initiators.
Minimizing stress has been found to be able to contribute to lower blood pressure by a certain percentage.
Reduce feasting on processed foods
If you are a processed food lover or restaurant lover, try minimizing your rates of visiting for you to lower blood pressure.
Foods such as deli meats, pizza, chips, canned soup, and many other processed foods contain high salt quantities and this is very dangerous to your body as it can cause an increase in your blood pressure.
Try avoiding foods labeled “low fat” too as they are always loaded with salt and sugar to replace the missing fat.
Reducing the consumption of processed foods will help you to reduce consumption of salt, sugar and other refined carbohydrates and this will help you to lower blood pressure by certain digits.
Reduce sodium consumption and increase potassium
Reducing sodium consumption can lower your blood pressure by approximately 5mm Hg. Lowering sodium improves your heart health.
Increasing potassium consumption can help to lower blood pressure by reducing the effects of salt and easing tension in the blood vessels.
DISCLAIMER: Diets rich in potassium can be harmful to people who are suffering from kidney disease. Always consult your doctor before you get into consuming potassium-rich foods.