High blood pressure (hypertension) is called the “silent killer” for good reason. It has no symptoms, but it’s a major risk for heart disease and stroke. And these are the leading causes of death in our society today. About 1 in 3 adults has high blood pressure.
Your blood pressure is measured in millimeters of mercury, abbreviated mmHg. There are two numbers involved:
- the pressure in your blood vessels when your heart beats (systolic blood pressure, the top number)
- the pressure in your blood vessels between beats, when your heart is resting (diastolic blood pressure, the bottom number)
Your blood pressure depends on how much blood your heart is pumping, and how much resistance there is to blood flow in your arteries. The narrower your arteries are, the higher your blood pressure.
Blood pressure that’s less than 120/80 mmHg is considered normal. Blood pressure that’s 140/90 mmHg or more is considered high. If your numbers are above normal but under 140/90 mmHg, you fall into the category of what’s called prehypertension. This means that you’re at risk for high blood pressure.
Here are a few natural ways to lower your blood pressure at home, without medication.
One of the causes of High Blood pressure is an imbalance of electrolytes in the blood. Coconut water contains an adequate amount of minerals and salts that can help counter this imbalance. Modern researchers say the potassium content in coconut water plays a huge role in lowering blood pressure. Both potassium chloride (seen in supplements) and potassium citrate (seen in foods) can help lower blood pressure. Potassium helps balance out the level of sodium in your blood and keeps your body functioning properly. Modern researchers say the potassium content in coconut water plays a huge role in lowering blood pressure. Both potassium chloride (seen in supplements) and potassium citrate (seen in foods) can help lower blood pressure. Potassium helps balance out the level of sodium in your blood and keeps your body functioning properly.
Cayenne pepper is one of the fastest ways to reduce high blood pressure. Cayenne pepper is a powerful vasodilator, which means it helps expand blood vessels and improve blood flow. This effect naturally lowers blood pressure levels by increasing the rate at which blood flows throughout the circulatory system, which in turn takes some of the pressure off arterial walls. Either mix one teaspoon of cayenne pepper with half a cup of lukewarm water or mix two tablespoons of raw organic honey with two teaspoons of cayenne pepper; boil them with eight ounces of water and drink when it is warm.
Please Note : Cayenne Pepper can be extremely hot so be very careful the amount you use.
Incorporating garlic to our daily meals can be effective in reducing high blood pressure. All of the beneficial effects of garlic are attributed to its sulfur-containing compounds: allicin, diallyl disulfide, diallyl trisulfide, and others. In double-blind studies with garlic preparations providing a daily dose of at least 10 mg allicin, blood pressure readings dropped with typical reductions of 11 mm Hg for the systolic and 5.0 in the diastolic within a 1 to 3-month period. To get enough allicin, eat 1 to 4 cloves of fresh garlic a day. If you want to avoid garlic breath in public, add minced fresh garlic to your salad dressing in the evening at dinner.
REDUCE SODIUM INTAKE , EAT MORE POTASSIUM
Cutting back on sodium and increasing your potassium intake can lower blood pressure. Potassium lessens the effect of salt in the system and eases tension in the blood vessels so the trick is to eat more foods that are naturally high in potassium. These foods include : Fish, Dairy products ( Milk and Yoghurt), Fruits ( Bananas, Oranges etc.) and Vegetables ( Sweet potatoes, Spinach, Tomatoes).
EAT LESS PROCESSED FOODS.
Most of the extra salt in our diet comes from processed foods and restaurant food. Popular high-salt items include, canned food items, pizza, chips, and other snacks. Foods labeled “low fat” are usually high in salt and sugar to compensate for the loss of fat. Fat is what gives food taste and makes you feel full.
Cutting down on (or even better, cutting out processed food will give you less salt, less sugar, and fewer refined carbohydrates. All of this results in lower blood pressure.
Make it a practice to check labels. Sodium that’s listed as 5 percent or less on the label of a food item is considered low. Twenty percent or more is considered high.
CUT BACK ON CAFFEINE
Caffeine raises your blood pressure, but the effect is temporary and the reaction varies from individual to individual.
Some people may be more sensitive to caffeine. If you’re caffeine-sensitive, you may want to cut back on your coffee consumption, or try decaffeinated coffee
Research on caffeine, including its health benefits, is in the news a lot. The choice of whether to cut back depends on many individual factors.
Indications from one study are that caffeine’s effect on raising blood pressure is greater if your blood pressure is already high. This same study, however, called for more research on the subject .
LOSE WEIGHT IF YOU ARE OVERWEIGHT
If you’re overweight, losing even 5 to 10 pounds can reduce your blood pressure. Plus, you’ll lower your risk of other medical problems.
Regular physical activity at least 30 minutes most days of the week can lower your blood pressure by 4 to 9 millimeters of mercury (mm Hg). It’s important to be consistent because if you stop exercising, your blood pressure can rise again.
If you have slightly high blood pressure (prehypertension), exercise can help you avoid developing full-blown hypertension. If you already have hypertension, regular physical activity can bring your blood pressure down to safer levels.
The best types of exercise for lowering blood pressure include walking, jogging, cycling, swimming or dancing. Strength training also can help reduce blood pressure.
REDUCE ALCOHOL INTAKE
Alcohol can raise your blood pressure, even if you’re healthy. Drink in moderation. Alcohol raises your blood pressure by 1 mmHg for each .35 ounces of alcohol consumed. Yes, that’s only a little more than a third of an ounce.
Smoking causes an immediate but temporary increase in your blood pressure and an increase in your heart rate. In the long term, the chemicals in tobacco can increase your blood pressure by damaging your blood vessel walls and narrowing your arteries. The hardened arteries cause higher blood pressure. The chemicals in tobacco can affect your blood vessels even if you’re around secondhand smoke. Children around secondhand smoke had higher blood pressure than a control group.