Lowering Blood Pressure Without Medications

Over 100 million Americans have high blood pressure, and it causes approximately 1,000 deaths per day. The threat is real. High blood pressure can lead to heart attack, strokes and even kidney failure. Without proper education, most Americans start taking medications before ever trying other options. Even with medications, there are long term risks. Many patients on medications often times see their blood pressure fluctuating from high to regular, which is another sign the medication may not be working properly.

These difficulties and deaths are more often than not, very preventable. A lifestyle change could effectively lower 50-90% of patients with high blood pressure. The complicated part is what changes to make, and how to make these changes not just a habit, but a lifestyle. Many patients find it even more appealing that they don’t have to take medication for the rest of their life.

 

Lifestyle Changes

 

How to start?

Typically, a three month lifestyle change will prove as a good time frame to begin seeing changes. Depending on other cofactors and severity of the condition, this may differ.

 

Physical Activity

Start slow, and build up over time. Even a moderate five to ten minute workout each day can be an effective start. Find something you enjoy doing, or become a part of a community to hold yourself accountable and have fun getting healthy.

  • Walking/Jogging
  • Hiking
  • Weight Training
  • Group Fitness Sessions
  • Recreational Sports

 

Healthy Diet

Cut out all processed foods. One of the best pieces of advice I have heard is when you go to the grocery store, stay out of the aisles. Usually the store areas that circle the aisles contain vegetables and produce, meat, etc. Consider limiting your salt/sodium intake as well.

 

Weight Loss

Experts state that losing 5-10% of your body weight for most high-blood pressure individuals will lower blood pressure and even improve other health conditions. Finding a diet short term does very little, and results will not last. Finding a way to eat properly each day is the key to long term success.

 

Restricting Alcohol

Typically we recommend less than one drink per day to be effective. People who have 7-13 drinks per week are much more likely to have hypertension. A glass of wine each night is not a problem, so limit it to that if you are use to indulging more often.

 

Smoking Cessation & Nicotine Products

Quitting smoking obviously has a variety of health benefits. One of them is decreasing high blood pressure. What is commonly misunderstood, is that even products only containing nicotine and no tobacco will still increase blood pressure and put people at a higher risk of heart problems.

If you haven’t had success in controlling your high blood pressure, now is a good time to start seeking help. Try some of the above examples. If you need more guidance or have questions about your current regimen, please feel free to make an appointment with our Primary Care Provider at Aaaah Wellness. Our team of professionals treat patients with these conditions almost every day. Don’t wait until it’s too late to ask for help.

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