Having high blood pressure puts you at risk for heart disease and stroke, the first and third leading causes of death in the United States. People of all ages and backgrounds can develop high blood pressure. It’s preventable and treatable. High blood pressure (hypertension) is known as the silent killer as there are no symptoms. High blood pressure damages the lining of your blood vessels which can lead to heart attacks, strokes, heart failure, and kidney failure. Having high blood pressure is like blowing too much air into a balloon – eventually the pressure is too much. A normal blood pressure is 120/80. Fortunately, it is easily treatable without medication. (Never stop medication without first discussing it with your personal physician!) Here are 10 ways to lower your blood pressure without medication:
1. Lose Weight. This is the best and only long-term solution to lower your BP.
2. Exercise. Regular aerobic exercise is great for lowering your BP.
3. Decrease your salt intake
4. Increase your potassium intake (through fruits and vegetables, not supplements)
5. Increase magnesium and calcium intake.
6. Decrease alcohol use.
7. Decrease caffeine intake.
8. Increase fiber intake.
9. Eat more fruits and vegetables.
10. Reduce stress/increase relaxation. Stress causes release of stress hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol which elevate your blood pressure. Meditation is good for relieving stress and decreasing your BP.