How to lower blood pressure without medication
Here are 10 ways to control blood pressure without medications:
- Weight loss: Obesity can increase the risk of high blood pressure. Weight loss has been the most effective way of reducing blood pressure. Even losing 10 pounds can lower blood pressure. Besides losing weight, one should generally focus on abdominal fat. Men having a waist measurement above 40 inch and women having waist measurement above 35 inches are at risk of high blood pressure.
- DASH diet: A program called Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) is advised for control and prevention of high blood pressure. It advises cutting away high-fat foods, processed foods, and sugar and salt-containing foods; avoiding excess salt for dressing and excess caffeinated drinks such as coffee and energy drinks; and focusing on fruits, fresh vegetables, whole grains, and high fiber and high calcium food.
- Daily exercise: Daily exercise is an excellent way to lose fat and reduce high blood pressure. Exercising daily for 30 minutes can bring down the blood pressure by about five to eight mm Hg. Walking, jogging, cycling, swimming, or dancing are the most effective ways of controlling blood pressure. Meditation and stress relaxing techniques can also help.
- Reduce sodium intake: Most Americans consume about 3400 mg of sodium a day, whereas the recommended daily intake of sodium is 2300 mg, with an optimal limit of less than 1500 mg for those with high blood pressure. Avoid keeping salt at the table for sprinkling over food and eating salted nuts and chips.
- Read labels: Labels reveals a lot. Read labels for high sodium, saturated fat, and cholesterol value, which can contribute to the risk of high blood pressure. Processed foods, prepackaged foods, and restaurant foods contain the highest amount of sodium, saturated fat, and cholesterol. Be a smart shopper and avoid foods that contain a high amount of sodium, saturated fats, and cholesterol.
- Increase potassium intake: Add more potassium to the diet because it regulates the heart rate and nullifies the effect of the sodium in the body. Before incorporating these foods into the diet, consult your physician for the right amount of potassium to be taken. Patients with significant kidney disease should restrict the amount of potassium. Potassium-rich foods are as follows:
- Fruits such as papaya, orange, melons, avocadoes, and apricots
- Green leafy vegetables such as spinach and kale
- Vegetables such as potatoes and sweet potatoes
- Tuna and salmon
- Nuts and seeds
- Abstain from heavy alcohol drinking: Alcohol in moderation may not cause much harm to the body. However, three drinks in one sitting can increase blood pressure temporarily. The general guidelines for moderate drinking are as follows:
- Two drinks a day for men younger than 65 years
- One drink a day for men aged 65 years and older
- One drink a day for women of any age
- Quit smoking: Cigarette smoking can increase blood pressure. Cutting down on smoking helps the blood pressure return to normal. It also helps in preventing the risk of heart diseases and improves overall health.
- Avoid excess stress: Stress hormones or cortisol constrict the blood vessels and can lead to temporary spikes in blood pressure. Stress can also result in overeating, poor sleep, and misusing drugs and alcohol. Stress-relieving meditations and breathing techniques can help in mitigating stress.
- Control the risk factors: Uncontrolled diabetes can make it harder to keep blood pressure under control. Hence, controlling diabetes and other risk factors is of utmost importance. Taking the prescription medicines at given doses and at given times is important. Regular monitoring of blood pressure at home is also advised.
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High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)
High blood pressure (hypertension) is a disease in which pressure within the arteries of the body is elevated. About 75 million people in the US have hypertension (1 in 3 adults), and only half of them are able to manage it. Many people do not know that they have high blood pressure because it often has no has no warning signs or symptoms.
Systolic and diastolic are the two readings in which blood pressure is measured. The American College of Cardiology released new guidelines for high blood pressure in 2017. The guidelines now state that blood normal blood pressure is 120/80 mmHg. If either one of those numbers is higher, you have high blood pressure.
The American Academy of Cardiology defines high blood pressure slightly differently. The AAC considers 130/80 mm Hg. or greater (either number) stage 1 hypertension. Stage 2 hypertension is considered 140/90 mm Hg. or greater.
If you have high blood pressure you are at risk of developing life threatening diseases like stroke and heart attack.
REFERENCE: CDC. High Blood Pressure. Updated: Nov 13, 2017.
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Hyperkalemia (High Blood Potassium)Hyperkalemia is an abnormally high level of potassium in the blood. Hyperkalemia symptoms include nausea, fatigue, tingling sensations, or muscle weakness. Hyperkalemia may also cause no symptoms. Hyperkalemia treatment may include a low-potassium diet, medications, and intravenous glucose and insulin. Causes of hyperkalemia include kidney dysfunction, certain medications, adrenal gland diseases, and potassium shifts.
Is A Manual Blood Pressure More Accurate?Manual blood pressure gives accurate results when used correctly by a trained person. However, manual blood pressure measurement is not the recommended type of blood pressure monitoring for home use because it requires some training.
What Are Abnormal Blood Pressure Number Ranges?Abnormal blood pressure, especially high blood pressure, is a common issue with no initial symptoms. Learn how to keep your blood pressure in the normal range.
High Blood Pressure SymptomsMost people with high blood pressure have no signs or symptoms, even if blood pressure readings reach dangerously high levels. In some patients, symptoms may include fatigue, headaches, dizziness, confusion, sweating, chest pain and vision problems.
What Is High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)?High blood pressure or hypertension is when the blood pressure readings consistently range from 140 or higher for systolic or 90 or higher for diastolic. Blood pressure readings above 180/120 mmHg are dangerously high and require immediate medical attention.
What Is Normal Blood Pressure by Age?What is normal blood pressure? Learn about normal blood pressure by age and the risk factors of hypertension.
Where Is an Arterial Line Placed?Arterial line placement, or arterial cannulation, is a procedure typically placed in the radial artery in the forearm or the femoral artery in the thigh. It may be used to prevent complications associated with repeated arterial puncture, for continuous blood pressure monitoring, blood sampling, and for patients with heart disease, stroke, head injury, drug overdose, in a coma, and more.
Which Blood Pressure Number Is the Most Important?The blood that flows through the arteries (blood vessels carrying blood from the heart to other parts of the body) exerts pressure against the arterial walls. The number above (120) is called the systolic blood pressure and the number below (80) is called the diastolic blood pressure. Though both readings are important, many doctors believe that systolic blood pressure is a better predictor of complications of hypertension, such as heart disease or stroke.