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How to Reduce Blood Pressure?

How to Reduce Blood Pressure?

manage blood pressure

Blood pressure problems, both high and low, are not uncommon these days. A number of people nowadays are suffering from high blood pressure or hypertension. A reading of 120/80 mm Hg, where 120 is your systolic blood pressure and 80 is your diastolic blood pressure, is generally considered as high blood pressure and if overlooked for a long time it can bring some serious problems like heart attack, stroke, and kidney damage.

According to a WHO report, a whopping number of almost 7.5 million deaths are caused by raised blood pressure worldwide which is actually 12.8% of total deaths. What makes this a more serious issue is the fact that 1.13 billion people of the world’s population are affected by hypertension(1).

The treatment of high blood pressure may include medication but the changes in your lifestyle and food habit are what of more importance. Through healthy food habits and natural remedies for blood pressure, you can very much control your blood pressure levels as well as can lead a normal and comfortable life. Here are some ways through which you can put a check on your high blood pressure.

Effective cures for blood pressure:

CURE 1: Foods for Blood Pressure

1. Leafy Greens:

(Vegetables) Dark Green Leafy
Image:ShutterStock

How does it work?

There can be no alternatives to leafy green vegetables when it comes to treating any diseases. Leafy vegetables are generally high in potassium which helps to get rid of excess sodium from your body. Less the sodium means to lower the blood pressure so the greens help in maintaining a healthy level of blood pressure.

How to use?

You should include green vegetables like lettuce, spinach, cabbage, kale, swiss chard, and beet greens, etc. In order to add these in your daily diet, you can just stir them with your favorite curry or stew. Kale chips are also a very great snack option. You can also try including olive leaf for maintaining your blood pressure.

How much to use?

Try to take 1-2 servings of green vegetables daily. It will not only help you with your high blood pressure but also help you maintain a healthy life.

2. Banana:

How does it work?

Bananas are famous for their high potassium content. Potassium helps in countering the effects of sodium in our body and strengthens the walls of blood vessels. Thus, banana with its plenty full of potassium can help you in controlling your blood pressure.

How to use?

You can eat ripe bananas in your breakfast. You can also add them with your breakfast cereal or oatmeal. Banana milkshake is also a healthy way of adding bananas to your diet.

How much to use?

Try to restrict yourself between one or two bananas a day. Bananas are typically high in calorie so overeating them may increase your weight. Weight gain can be a bad thing for your blood pressure levels.

3. Berries:

benefits of berries
Image:ShutterStock

How does it work?

Berries are naturally rich with an antioxidant flavonoid called anthocyanins. This antioxidant compound has been proven to lower the blood pressure levels according to a study.

How to use?

Anthocyanins rich blueberries and strawberries can be included in your diet if your blood pressure remains on the higher side. You can have them with your cereal or granola; they can also be a part of your mid-day snacks.

How much to use?

This would depend on how much you love berries. However, be careful before eating canned berries as they might contain high amounts of added sugar.

4. Oatmeal:

How does it work?

Low in fat and sodium as well as high in fiber, oats can be your best friend in hypertension. A proper diet for blood pressure is very important while fighting with it. The fiber called beta-glucan present in oats can help to reduce the blood cholesterol levels. The low sodium and high beta-glucan is a perfect combination for a patient of hypertension.

How to use?

Oatmeal is one of the best breakfast options for anyone. Boil 1-2 cups of rolled oats with milk and a healthy bowl of oatmeal is ready. You can also add berries or bananas to make it more beneficial for you.

How much to use?

One bowl of oatmeal in your breakfast with berries or bananas would work for you and have beneficial effects in lowering your blood pressure levels.

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CURE 2: Supplements for Blood Pressure

1. Folic Acid:

folic acid menu
Image:ShutterStock

How does it work?

Folic acid or Vitamin B9 can prove helpful when it comes to dealing with high blood pressure. It helps your blood vessels to relax and improves the blood flow. This lessens the risk of developing a raised blood pressure level.

How to use?

You can take folic acid supplements as capsules or tablets. The Vitamin B-Complex capsules available in the medical stores are the best sources of folic acid. Some natural sources of folic acid are leafy vegetables, wheat bread, and lentils, etc.

How much to use?

A daily dose of 1000 micrograms of folic acid may help in reducing the blood pressure. However, if you are thinking of taking supplements, do consult your doctor first.

2. Potassium:

How does it work?

Potassium can counter the effects of sodium in your body. Higher sodium levels in your body can lead you to hypertension but potassium can help in reducing levels of sodium in your body through urine.

How to use?

You can buy potassium supplements from local drug stores as including them in your diet may improve your blood pressure condition. Introducing potassium-rich foods such as leafy vegetables, banana, avocado, mushroom, sweet potato, and tomato, etc. is a good way to meet daily potassium requirements in your body. Another potassium-rich food which you can try is beetroot juice for blood pressure.

How much to use?

A dose of 99 mg per day of potassium may show beneficial effects on your condition if you are suffering from higher blood pressure.

3. CoQ10

CoQ10 benefits
Image:ShutterStock

How does it work?

Studies have found that Coenzyme Q10 or ubiquinone can prove beneficial in high blood pressure conditions along with many cardiac conditions like heart attack and cardiac arrest. As a powerful anti-oxidant, it can lower your systolic blood pressure by 17 mm Hg and diastolic blood pressure by 10 mm Hg(2).

How to use?

Soft gel capsules of CoQ10 are recommended by the doctors as they are easy to absorb. Also, CoQ10 is fat soluble which makes even better to be had with a fat-containing meal.

How much to use?

Recommended daily dose of CoQ10 is 30-200 mg though it should not be taken if you are not an adult of 19 years or more. Consult your physician before going for CoQ10 supplements.

4. Omega-3 Fatty Acids:

rich omega 3 fatty acids
Image:ShutterStock

How does it work?

Omega-3 fatty acids have a wide range of health benefits including lowering the risk of developing high blood pressure. It contains docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) which help your body to get rid of LDL or bad cholesterol which is the main reason behind hypertension.

How to use?

Omega-3 fatty acids are found in fish oil supplements. The best way of including omega-3 fatty acids to your diet is by adding fatty fish to your diet. Other natural sources of omega-3 are walnuts, flaxseeds, krill oil, and calamari oil.

How much to use?

If you want to see significant changes in your high blood pressure levels then you should take high doses(>3 g/day) of omega-3 fatty acids. However, it will be better to consult an expert before taking them in high doses.

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CURE 3: Essential Oils for Blood Pressure

1. Bergamot Oil:

How does it work?

Bergamot is primarily known for its stress relieving and calming properties. It contains flavonoids which stimulate the production of serotonin and dopamine. Both of them are neurotransmitters which help in reducing anxiety and, thus, lower the blood pressure.

How to use?

Though mainly used in making cosmetics, bergamot oil has beneficial effects on hypertension. Inhaling bergamot 15-60 minutes can reduce your stress levels and decreases heart rate.

How much to use?

Try inhaling bergamot regularly if you are facing acute hypertension condition. 15-60 minutes a day would be enough to calm your mind.

2. Rose Oil:

rose with oil
Image:ShutterStock

How does it work?

Extracted from roses, rose oil may prove helpful in reducing high blood pressure, anxiety and depression. Its anti-inflammatory property is an effective way to improve blood circulation in your body which reduces hypertension.

How to use?

You can mix rose oil with apricot or bergamot oil and massage it to your body for better results. This will improve blood circulation and anxiety level. Massage it on the chest and muscles so that it can help in controlling hypertension.

How much to use?

If you want to control your hypertension using rose oil, consider massaging your body with rose oil mixture at least twice a week.

3. Frankincense Essential Oil:

frankincense essential oil benefits
Image: Shutterstock

How does it work?

Frankincense with its warm and sweet scent possesses a powerful soothing quality. Frankincense oil makes it easy to overcome stress and relieves you from the problems of raised blood pressure.

How to use?

Mix frankincense oil with rose oil or bergamot oil and you can apply this mixture to your chest. This will help you with your stress and anxiety management making your mind calm.

How much to use?

Take two or three tablespoons frankincense oil and mix one tablespoon of rose or bergamot oil with it. Massage this frankincense oil mixture over your body to get the best results.

4. Lavender Oil:

How does it work?

Getting rid of nervous tension and improving blood circulation are just two benefits of lavender oil among many others. By affecting blood circulation and mental health, it promotes a low risk of high blood pressure.

How to use?

Lavender oil is the perfect oil for massaging. Massaging it over your neck area makes it easier to release the nervous tension and alleviates blood circulation which is directly linked with hypertension.

How much to use?

Consider massaging your body using lavender oil at least thrice a week. Trying this for six weeks regularly can lower systolic blood pressure by 4 mm Hg.

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CURE 4: Home Remedies for Blood Pressure

1. Exercise More:

exercise more
Image:ShutterStock

How does it work?

A lesser amount of physical activity brings many complications in our life including high blood pressure and heart diseases. The less the physical activity the more amount of fat accumulates in your body making your body overweight.

This accumulation of fat in your body may make your blood vessels narrow and that is the main reason for blood pressure. By exercising more you can shed off those extra fats and lead a healthy life.

How to use?

There are many ways to increase your daily physical activity level. You can join a gym or participate in aerobic exercises. Apart from all these, there are many simple ways by which you can increase your physical activity level.

Use stairs instead of a lift, choose walking over driving, participate in sports, do household chores, try swimming; all these will help you in lowering your blood pressure. Yoga for blood pressure is also another effective alternative.

How much to use?

A work out session of at least 30 minutes on a daily basis is recommended to lead a healthy life. However, do not overdo yourself as this will only make your body weak and exhausted.

2. Eat Less Sugar and Refined Carbohydrates:

How does it work?

Consumption of added sugar and refined carbohydrate is directly associated with weight gain and hypertension. A low/no-sugar and low-carb diet help you lose those extra pounds which are giving you high levels of blood pressure.

How to use?

Restrict the consumption of sugar and avoid foods with a high amount of added sugar. Along with that, skip refined carbohydrates like white bread, rice, and biscuits, etc. This will definitely help you with your weight and blood pressure.

How much to use?

A low-sugar and low-carbohydrate diet is the best idea for you if you are having high blood pressure. This would help you with hypertension.

3. Stop Smoking:

quit smoking
Image: ShutterStock

How does it work?

Smoking can be the reason behind your raised blood pressure levels. The chemicals present in tobacco directly affect your blood vessels. These harmful chemicals damage the blood vessel walls which lead you towards blood pressure problems.

How to use?

If you are a regular smoker, stopping smoking can be beneficial for your overall health. Try to quit smoking permanently and if that seems impossible then try to limit it.

How much to use?

The advice would be to quit smoking completely if you are having high blood pressure. Tobacco-Free life is always a better life.

4. Get Some Sound Sleep:

sound sleep
Image: ShutterStock

How does it work?

Sleep is something which has direct effects on your bodily functions. A night of sound sleep can potentially help in lowering stress levels and controlling your out-of-control blood pressure. Sleeping disorder or deprivation can easily become the reason of your unhealthy mind thereby leading you towards hypertension.

How to use?

If you sleep less or do not get a night of quality sleep, then try to get some. In order to get some restful sleep at night, you may set a regular sleep schedule and avoid sleeping at day time; exercise at day time is also a great idea to have some sleep at night. You can also try chamomile or lavender tea. These soothe your mind to a great extent thus, promoting a better sleeping pattern.

How much to use?

According to the studies, you should sleep 7-8 hours per day in order to avoid hypertension conditions. Sleeping less than 7 hours and more than 9 hours can alleviate blood pressure levels(3).

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CURE 5: Herbs for Blood Pressure

1. Basil

How does it work?

A native to India and other tropical countries of Asia, basil can be a good option to control your hypertension. These green leaves are loaded with Vitamin K and calcium which makes it healthier than you can think of. Due to the presence of beta-caryophyllene, this herb has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antiviral, and antitumorigenic properties. These qualities of basil block the substances which tighten the blood vessels and contribute towards the reduction of your high blood pressure.

How to use?

Basil can be used in your foods in various ways. You can add freshly picked basil to your pasta, soups, and stews. At the same time, this herb can be infused with your tea or you can take it directly with honey.

How much to use?

Try to include basil in your daily diet. This will help you with your hypertension by lowering it. Apart from basil, celery for blood pressure can be a great alternative.

2. Cinnamon for Blood Pressure

cinnamon benefits
Image:ShutterStock

How does it work?

Cinnamon extract is believed to be effective in lowering down high blood pressure levels. The properties present in cinnamon help your blood vessels relax making it easy for the blood to flow and reduce the elevated blood pressure.

How to use?

Try to include cinnamon in your daily diet. You can add cinnamon powder in your puddings, breakfast cereal, oatmeal, cakes as well as in your favorite cup of coffee. You can also mix cinnamon powder with lukewarm water and drink it first thing in the morning.

How much to use?

There is no guideline of using cinnamon. Just try to introduce it to your diet and see how it affects your high blood pressure levels.

3. Garlic for Blood Pressure

benefits of Garlic
Image:ShutterStock

How does it work?

Garlic is a well known and heavily used element in kitchens all over the world but very few know how effective it is in treating hypertension. Garlic for blood pressure can do more than you can even think of. Garlic promotes nitric oxide production in your body which relaxes muscles and results in vasodilatation. The presence of placebo in garlic preparation helps the patients with increased systolic blood pressure.

How to use?

Garlic is widely used in the preparation of various dishes across the world. You can add it in your curry, pasta, stew or even in your mayo. You can also take garlic extract supplements if you find it more convenient.

How much to use?

Use garlic while preparing your favorite recipes according to the requirement as too much of garlic can ruin the taste. This will help you in lowering your hypertension to a very considerable extent.

4. Hawthorn

How does it work?

The Chinese have been using hawthorn in the treatment of blood pressure for a long time now. Hawthorn is rich in flavonoids and oligomeric procyanidins. They have ample amounts of beneficial effects on hypertension and heart conditions.

How to use?

Hawthorn can be highly beneficial for you if you are suffering from acute hypertension. You can take it in the form of an extract or a pill. You can also use them in your tea.

How much to use?

To deal with your high blood pressure, you should include hawthorn in your daily routine. Try to consume at least two cups of hawthorn infused tea daily in order to get significant results.


FAQs

1. What is High Blood Pressure or Hypertension?

High blood pressure, also known as hypertension, is a condition when the pressure created by the blood in your blood vessels is higher than it should be. It is measured millimeter of mercury or mm Hg.

2. What are the dangers of having a High Blood Pressure?

Though high blood pressure sounds pretty much harmless if left untreated for a long time, it can create some serious health issues including heart attack, stroke, heart failure, kidney diseases, and many other serious troubles.

3. What is a normal Blood Pressure reading?

A typically normal blood pressure reading is below 120/80 mm Hg where 120 is your systolic blood pressure and 80 is your diastolic blood pressure.

4. Is sodium harmful to High Blood Pressure?

Taking foods with an excessive amount of salt means taking more sodium into your body. This sodium increases water retention in your body which leads to a raised blood pressure.

Therefore, sodium is like poison for high blood pressure. Try to consume less sodium and more potassium if you are a patient of high blood pressure as potassium helps to get rid of extra sodium from your body.

5. What should be my diet for Blood Pressure?

Your food habits can have direct effects on your blood pressure conditions. That is why you need to be careful about your food intake if you are trying to lower your blood pressure level.

Try to include potassium-rich foods like leafy green vegetables and bananas in your diet. Foods like berries, garlic, tomatoes, walnuts, and dark chocolates, etc. also, help you in reducing your blood pressure. At the same time avoid all kinds of junk foods, foods with added sugar, refined carbs, and alcohol in order to avoid high blood pressure levels.

6. Do essential oils really help in lowering Raised Blood Pressure?

Essential oils are being used for their medicinal properties since ages. High blood pressure is among those issues which can be helped by using essential oils.

Uses of essential oils for the blood pressure may range from inhaling them directly to massaging them over your body. Just inhaling the essential oils like bergamot oil, jasmine oil, and lavender oil can make your mind stress-free and bring down your blood pressure levels.

You can also use bergamot oil, jasmine oil, lavender oil, frankincense oil or rose oil for massaging your body. This will relax your muscles and blood vessels improving the blood circulation in your body.

7. Which herbs can treat High Blood Pressure?

There are plenty of herbs which can help you with your blood pressure levels. You can add herbs like basil, celery, garlic and cinnamon, etc into your favorite curry, stew or any other recipes. This will not only enhance the taste of the dishes but will also bring down your increased blood pressure.

Also, try to infuse herbs like hawthorn, French lavender as well as basil into your tea. Hibiscus tea for blood pressure is another remedy which you can try. This can be a very helpful remedy for hypertension.

8. Which supplements should I take to deal with Hypertension?

Supplements play, to a very large extent, a big role in lowering down high blood pressure. You can take Manganese, Potassium, Omega-3 fatty acid, CoenQ10 and folic acid, etc. supplements as they can help your body deal with your hypertension. However, always seek the guidance of your doctor before trying any of these supplements.

Hypertension or high blood pressure has become a common health condition worldwide. Apparently, this simple looking issue can bring many serious health issues including cardiovascular diseases along with it.

Proper medication is always recommended for any health hazard but high blood pressure is directly affected by lifestyle and food habits.

Therefore, it is important to control your lifestyle and food habits if you want to lead a comfortable life even while fighting with hypertension. Along with those healthy habits, you can introduce and incorporate several essential oils, herbs as well as supplements which will boost your recovering process.

All of these recommended healthy habits and natural remedies will only lead you to the healthy and hypertension free life that you have dreamed of.

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