Did you know that over 77 million American adults suffer from high blood pressure? That’s about 1 in 3 people. And of those people, 70,000 will die from their high blood pressure each year.
These are scary numbers, and rightfully so – high blood pressure can cause devastating diseases throughout your entire body including aneurysms, stroke, dementia, and heart failure.
With such serious consequences, I wanted to take some time and offer some easy steps you can take TODAY to combat high blood pressure without drastically changing your lifestyle.
Navigating through life’s demands, from work deadlines to personal responsibilities, can escalate stress levels. And when stress rises, so does the risk of elevated blood pressure. Discover practical tips to manage stress and maintain healthy blood pressure levels.
1. Yet Another Reason to Drink Water
Keeping hydrated is hugely important in controlling your blood pressure. Water can wash away toxins, keep unhealthy cravings away, and, most importantly, rid your body of excess sodium.
That reduction in your body’s sodium can directly effect blood pressure levels and keep you at normal levels. Good rule of thumb is to drink ½ your body weight a day in ounces..
2. Alcohol...In Moderation, Of Course
Moderated alcohol use has been shown to reduce the risk of coronary and femoral problems when it comes to your arteries.
Of course I’m not advocating drinking a bottle of booze every night, but the occasional glass of wine or celebratory drink can sometimes be in order.
Keep it mind, alcohol can and does affect everyone differently so if you partake, certainly do so responsibly
3. Take Up Tea
Sipping tea daily can lower systolic blood pressure by nearly as much as many prescription medications. Many herbal teas contain hibiscus; look for blends that list it near the top of the chart of ingredients–this often indicates a higher concentration per serving. More studies are showing tea is responsible for a large reduction in high blood pressure.
4. Delicious Dark Chocolate
The antioxidants and flavonoids in chocolate can keep your blood pressure down, but too much of it can lead to weight gain and ruin the beneficial attributes of this natural treat. Again, everything in moderation, but don’t be afraid to indulge from time to time.
5. Get Up, Stand Up
By simply standing instead of sitting, you can increase blood flow to your legs and feet and drastically lower your blood pressure. If your office allows it, ask for a standing workstation, or just try to incorporate any kind of light physical activity into your life, even if it’s just standing up once an hour.
If you do have to sit down, make sure to keep your legs uncrossed to increase blood flow to your feet, thus lowering blood pressure.
6. Where There’s Smoke There’s Pressure
Less and less people smoke today and for good reason. Did you know that 30% of all heart disease deaths are directly related to cigarette smoking? Not only does it effect your lungs, but it can lead to coronary disease, and arteriosclerosis.
Cut down (or cut out) smoking, and cut down your blood pressure. It’s as simple as that. I know it’s easier said than done, but well worth the effort.
7. Controlling your Blood Pressure
Incorporating these simple steps into your everyday life can help you stay on top of your blood pressure and keep these diseases at bay.
If you’re concerned about the possibility of not being able to regulate your blood pressure, it might be a good idea to consult your doctor about physical recommendations.
Each of our bodies is different so make sure you know your limits before incorporating any kind of physical activity or diet changes into your daily routine.
At Forum Health, we can help you reduce your blood pressure, including medications, and give you to tools to reduce stress and its effect on your body, mind and spirit.