How To Lower Your Blood Pressure Naturally

Blood pressure is a measure of the force your heart uses to pump blood around your body.

A normal blood pressure level is less than 120/80 mmHG. Increased blood pressure, which means your top number is over 180 and your bottom number is over 120.

That can increase your risk of all sorts of problems like heart problems, kidney disease, vision problems and sexual dysfunction. Nearly half of all Americans (47% or 116 million) have it. Almost 1 in 5 people take medication for it.

Below is a list of foods and beverages to avoid if you have high blood pressure, along with a list of foods that help you lower and maintain your blood pressure at a healthy level.

Photo by Pavel Danilyuk on Pexels.com

HERE’S THE AVOID LIST

Salty food

Salty snacks like pretzels and chips

Over-the-counter Decongestants (they narrow blood vessels and can increase blood pressure)

Caffeine

Alcohol

Bread, Rolls

Tacos & Burritos

Peanut Butter

Desserts

Sugary foods

Pizza

Sandwiches

Fruit Juice

Soda

Bacon

Deli Meat

Cured Meat

Canned Fish

Frozen Shrimp

Sausage

Butter

Margarine

Lard

Hamburgers

Kebabs

Vegetable Juice

Cooking Oils

Chili Sauce

Ketchup

Soy Sauce

Salad Dressings

Red Meat (including pork, lamb, beef, veal, venison, goat)

Full Fat Dairy

Granola Bars

Prepackaged Food

Canned Soups (check labels for sodium)

Crackers

Airline Food

Smoking cigarettes

Cheese

Cottage Cheese

Sauce

Marinade

Canned Beans

Frozen Meals

Plant based meat alternatives

Sports Drinks

Pudding

Pickles

GOOD FOR BLOOD PRESSURE

Water

Skinless Chicken

Grilled Chicken

Skinless Turkey

Fish

Bananas

Blueberries

Apples

Oranges

Vegetables

Sweet Potatoes

Spinach

Broccoli

Carrots

Eggs

Lentils

Nuts

Tofu

Avocados

Citrus Fruits

Oatmeal

Fiber-rich foods

Whole grains

ALSO GOOD FOR BLOOD PRESSURE

Again, do not consume more than 1 teaspoon of salt daily. Beware of hidden salt in foods or beverages.

Reduce your stress with meditation or other relaxing breathing techniques, stretch daily, try yoga, listen to soothing music

Sleep on your left side. Get at least 9 hours of sleep each night.

Drink lots of water.

Exercise reduces blood pressure 5-7 mm Hg

If obese, every 2.2 pounds lost lowers your blood pressure around 1mm Hg per 1 Kilogram

Look for salt-free or very low sodium on labels

If you do buy canned beans or vegetables rinse them completely under running water first

If you take blood pressure medication

Be sure to review what you eat and drink daily as well as how much you move. If you need more good for you foods or meal suggestions, check out the DASH diet link below, specifically tailored to lower blood pressure.

https://www.mydash.diet

If you need added help with changing your behavior around food, Noom is a digital platform that can match you with a trained coach. It was developed using evidence-based approaches and scientifically-proven principles, such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) to help you build sustainable habits that last. They help with stress, anxiety, hypertension and diabetes.

https://noom.com

Taking blood pressure medication without making lifestyle changes will only increase your risk of additional problems.

Be sure to make the lifestyle changes first, and ask a loved one to help keep you accountable. Having one day a week as your cheat day –say if you love pizza or bacon –will help as most people, even athletes, subscribe to allowing themselves a day to indulge.

It’s only when indulging becomes a daily habit that your body will give you a Warning Light to make a change.

Most items on the Avoid list are highly addictive, which is why people have a hard time stopping, but it’s so worth it. You will feel better, have more energy and avoid longterm risks associated with high blood pressure.

It generally takes one month to notice the difference. If your doctor told you that you have high blood pressure, schedule a followup appointment in one month to track your progress.

Even though medication can lower it within a few days, it may not be the best long-term treatment due to side effects.

Always check with your physician before stopping any blood pressure medication, even if there’s been a recall.

Stay healthy.

Top 10 Health Benefits of Bicycling

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1.  Builds muscle tone

2.  Reduce stress, anxiety, depression

3.  Strengthens rear, thighs, hips

4.  Gentle on joints, preserves cartilage

5.  Improves coordination

6.  Improves stamina

7.  Great for your cardiovascular system: 20 miles a week improves heart health

8.  Improves blood pressure

9.  Burns 300 calories an hour

10. Cycling for 30-minutes every day burns 11 pounds of fat a year