What Is High Blood Pressure – Home Remedies of Hypertension
Do you know, from 2005 to 2015, hypertension or high blood pressure attributed to 37.5% more deaths? This is a huge number.
High BP shortens the life-span of an individual. According to the CDC, every 7 out of 10 people in the USA have their first heart attack because of high BP. The global data is more frightening. WHO says that high blood pressure is the reason for approximately 7.5 million deaths worldwide in a year.
Raised blood pressure is the biggest reason for cardiovascular diseases. The modern lifestyle, bad eating habits, negligence, and anger are a few common reasons for high blood pressure.
What is High Blood Pressure?
In the medical term, high blood pressure (hypertension) is a condition when arteries feel high tension. Arteries carry the blood from the heart to all the tissues of the body. When the blood exerts high pressure on the wall of the arteries, the condition is defined as Hypertension.
The American Heart Association describes blood pressure ranges as:
- Normal Blood Pressure: Below 120/80 mm Hg
- Elevated Blood Pressure: Between 120-129/80 mm Hg
- High BP: Above 130/80 mm Hg
Home Remedies for Hypertension – 6 Ways to Control Your Blood Pressure
Popping medicines for hypertension is easy but medicines have their own side-effects. Long term consumption of medicines can lead to other complications in the body. Modifying lifestyle, diets, and daily exercise help in lowering blood pressure.
Here are some tested home remedies you can follow to control high blood pressure:
1. Eat DASH Diet:
The DASH diet (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) emphasizes lifelong healthy eating. Following the DASH Diet, you can lower the blood pressure. The main focus of the DASH diet is to lower the sodium level in the body through a potassium-rich diet.
DASH Diet includes:
- Two servings of fruits and vegetables in a day.
- Add whole grain as a must diet at least once in a day.
- Eat low-fat dairy products. Fish, nuts, and lean meat are also helpful.
- Avoid foods that are high in saturated fats. Processed foods, fatty meats, and full-fat dairy products are dangerous in hypertension.
- Avoid desserts, added sugar other than natural sugar and sweetened beverages such as packaged juice or soda.
2. Walk and Daily Exercise:
Nothing is better than walking and exercising daily for lowering high BP. Exercise helps the heart to pump blood in the arteries more efficiently. It lowers the pressure in arteries and blood flow more smoothly in the body.
Researchers say that walking 30 minutes a day lowers blood pressure. Moderate exercise for 150 minutes or vigorous exercise for 75 minutes daily can control blood pressure to the normal level.
3. Lower Alcohol Intake:
Having one or two drinks of alcohol is safe but heavy drinkers have high chances of stroke. Too much alcohol raises blood pressure. It can be fatal sometimes. People having a genetic risk of heart or liver diseases must not consume alcohol at all.
The safe limits for daily consumption of alcohol are:
- Men below the age of 65 years – two drinks a day
- Men 65 or above years older – one drink a day
- Women of any age – one drink a day
By one drink a day, it does not mean a big beer glass of alcohol. For beer, a drink must be not more than 12 ounces. For wine, one drink means 5 ounces only or 1.5 ounces of distilled spirits (80-proof).
Also, not to forget that alcohols have calories. Consuming alcohol can lead to weight gain. Alcohol also interferes with the efficacy of a few blood pressure medications. It is always best to avoid alcohol in any circumstances.
4. Fix Nicotine Addiction:
Do you know that nicotine is a big reason behind the narrowing of arteries and faster beating of the heart? It increases the blood pressure. For a person suffering from hypertension, nicotine is poison. Cigarettes and tobacco are two major sources of nicotine for humans. Reducing the use of cigarettes and tobacco helps to lower the blood pressure.
Even, those who consume passive nicotine are prone to hypertension. The smokers not only put their lives at risk but also make non-smokers life hell as well. Those having hypertension or heart disease, smoking can reduce their life.
5. Avoid extra sodium or salt:
Avoiding sodium or salt doesn’t mean not using saltshakers. All processed foods contain a high amount of sodium. In fact, processed foods have almost 75% of sodium that we consume daily.
High intake of sodium results in the low functioning of the inner lining of the blood vessels. Also, it increases artery stiffness. It also enlarges the muscle tissue of the wall of the heart’s chamber.
In simpler words, sodium increases the risk of early death. For hypertension patients, high sodium is equivalent to suicide.
The ways to reduce sodium salt in daily food are:
- Avoid taking extra salt in food.
- Use herbs and spices instead of salts for seasoning the food.
- Read the food label, especially the level of sodium in packaged foods.
6. Lose Weight:
Weight and blood pressure are old friends. They always come together. Obesity is one of the main reasons for hypertension. But wait, not only the weight but the measurement of the waistline is also important in high blood pressure.
The visceral fat (fat around the waist) surrounds the organs in the abdomen. This can lead to grave health issues including hypertension. Don’t forget to read our previous blog post about how to lose weight with oatmeal.
Hypertension has become a household name in the last few years. Almost every family has a member suffering from hypertension. But, a simple change in your lifestyle can help you control your high BP. So next time, if you feel stressed, anxious, and restless, check your BP and start following these simple home remedies. After all, your health is precious to your loved ones.