The Mayo Clinic suggests that exercising three to five times per week can help to reduce stress levels. Also, there are certain activities that can help improve long term differences in lowering blood pressure.
Some stress relievers include walking, listening to relaxing music and getting plenty of rest.
3. Reduce Salt
The American Heart Association suggests that most adults consume no more than 1,500 mg of salt per day.
The Association addresses several common myths regarding high blood pressure and encourages a healthy lifestyle to help eliminate the disease.
Because a vast of amount of sodium intake is hidden within the processed foods that we eat, we should reduce or eliminate processed food consumption.
Instead, eat more whole foods such as fruits, grains, and vegetables.
And let’s not forget to ditch the salt shaker. Try seasoning your foods with natural herbs and spices for added flavor.
4. Check Your Caffeine Intake
Caffeine is known to increase blood pressure levels and consuming drinks such as soda or coffee can cause short-term spikes in blood pressure levels.
In fact, doctors often advise their patients not to drink caffeinated beverages before their visits because of this very reason.
It hasn’t been proven that having caffeine, long term, is a main culprit of having blood pressure. But, monitoring your blood pressure levels after reducing caffeine might be a great way to see how it affects you.
5. Drop Excess Weight
Controlling your weight can help you lower your blood pressure according to a report issued from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.
Research states that for every 20 pounds you lose, your systolic pressure can drop 5-20 points.
This is highly beneficial for people who are hypertensive.
Following a diet such as the DASH diet can help people with high blood pressure reduce their risks.
Furthermore, pairing a healthy diet along with exercise can further boost healthy blood pressure results.
6. Limit Alcoholic Drinks
Alcohol is commonly referenced as being one of the causes of high blood pressure.
Dr. Ian Del Conde, a cardiovascular specialist at the Miami Cardiac and Vascular Institute, explains that small amounts of alcohol is not typically bad when done in moderation.
He also explains that blood pressure can be elevated if you binge drink and should be avoided.
Basically, keeping alcohol consumption to a minimum is highly encouraged regarding high blood pressure.
7. Eat Blueberries
Berries are an excellent way to lower blood pressure because they are rich in antioxidants, polyphenols, and are heart healthy.
A study conducted by researchers at King’s College London, recently found that participants who ate 200 g of blueberries every day for a month had improved blood vessel functions and decreased systolic blood pressure.
Now, 200 grams is equivalent to about 7 ounces, so it eating this amount is not hard to do during a day.
So eating more blueberries can be beneficial for people who suffer from high blood pressure. Find different ways to eat them isn’t hard as they can be eaten in cereals, salads or as a dessert.
8. Decrease Sugar
We hear about low-carb diets as being the best way to lose weight and curb sugar cravings.
But, why is eating less sugar so beneficial for people who suffer from high blood pressure?
It starts with the fact that a diet that is high in sugar, causes excess weight gain. And as heavily documented, excess weight gain over time puts us at risk for high blood pressure.
Now, this doesn’t only refer to table sugar on sweet treats. Keep in mind that sugar is found in many processed foods.
The American Heart Association recommends that women eat no more than 100 calories of sugar, while men should have no more than 150 calories.
A few ways to reduce sugar is by reading labels on food products before consumption and eliminating table sugar altogether. Instead, replace it with a sugar substitute such as stevia.
Also, eliminating white foods such as breads, white rice, pasta and cereals will greatly reduce sugar in the body.
9. Breathe Deeply
Breathing deeply and slowly can help to calm the nerve activity in the body. When this happens, blood vessels tend to relax and widen.
Dr. Herbert Benson, author and founder of the Mind/Body Medical Institute at Massachusetts developed a breathing technique called the “relaxation response”.
Relaxation Response is as follows:
- Sit quietly in a comfortable position with your eyes closed
- Deeply relax all your muscles starting with your feet up through to your face
- Breath naturally through your nose while becoming aware of your breathing
- Concentrate on a word or phrase while breathing in and out
- Continue breathing this way for 10 to 20 minutes