Blood pressure (B.P) is the amount of force that blood exerts on the walls of the arteries as it flows through them. When this pressure reaches high levels, it can lead to serious health problems.
High blood pressure or hypertension is the leading heart-related health issues we have. There are various causes of high blood pressure, most of which are age, family history, poor diet. To mention just a few.
There are a number of things you can do naturally to reduce the blood pressure, even without medication.
- Walk and Exercise Regularly
Exercise is one of the best ways to lower blood pressure. Regular exercise helps to make the heart stronger and more efficient at pumping blood. This lowers the pressure on the arteries. Doing more cardio is very good for the heart. As little as 30 minutes of walking per day goes a long way in reducing the blood pressure and overall health of the body.
- Reduce Sodium Intake
Salt intake is high around the world. In many studies, salt intake is linked to high blood pressure and other heart-related issues.
If you already have hypertension, it’s worth cutting back on salt intake to see if it makes a difference. Swap processed foods for fresh ones. Try seasoning with herbs and spice instead of using salt. People have different sensitivity to salt, and the reason is unclear. However, genetics play a role here and the reduction of sodium intake will particularly be worth trying for those with high sensitivity to salt.
- Drink less Alcohol
Alcohol has the ability to increase hypertension. Drinking alcohol is linked to 16% of high blood pressure cases around the world.
While some research has suggested that a moderate intake of alcohol helps in protecting the heart, those benefits may be offset by the negative effects. Drinking alcohol in any quantity may raise your blood pressure. Limit your drinking to no more than one drink a day for women and 2 for men.
- Eat more Potassium-rich Foods
Potassium helps to get rid of sodium and ease blood pressure in the body. To get a better balance of potassium to sodium, eat less processed foods and more fresh, whole foods. To make it easier for you, here are examples of potassium-rich foods:
- Vegetables, especially leafy greens, tomatoes, and potatoes
- Fruits, including melons, bananas, avocados, oranges, berries, and apricots.
- Diary, such as milk and yogurt.
- Tuna and salmon
- Learn to Manage Stress
It is well known that excess stress is bad for health. When you are chronically stressed, the body is in a constant fight or flight mode. That means a faster heartbeat and a constricted blood vessel. Stress is the driving cause of hypertension. When you’re under stress, you are much more likely to engage in some behaviors, such as drinking alcohol, smoking or even eating more processed foods, and these all have the tendency to increase the B.P. Finding ways to manage stress can go a long way.
- Lose Weight
If you’re overweight, losing weight can help in reducing the blood pressure. Obesity is a leading cause of heart-related problems. Losing weight can help your blood vessels do a better job by expanding and contracting, making it easier for the left ventricle of the heart to pump blood.
High blood pressure has been the cause of so many deaths. We should take our health very seriously by incorporating healthy habits daily.