The force of blood against the walls of arteries is blood pressure. High Blood Pressure (HBP) causes due to overstretching of the arterial walls and tiny tears in the blood vessels. HPB, also known as hypertension induce kidney failure, heart attacks and even dementia.
“Small changes can yield big benefits. Be control and lower high blood pressure naturally”
Here are some lifestyle changes that lower your blood pressure
It’s a better idea to get advice from your doctor before going to start exercise regularly. 30 minutes walk or exercise a day can keep your heart healthy and lower your blood pressure. Check with your doctor is you are over are 40 (men) or 50 (women). Increasing your exercise level can lower your blood pressure within just a few weeks.
Lose extra pounds
Extra weight increases your blood pressure leads to heart attack. The more weight you lose, the lower your blood pressure will be. The best way to achieve your target weight from your doctor lowers your blood pressure. Losing weight will help you to reduce your health problems.
Choosing low fat, low calorie foods and physical activities are the best ways to lose your weight. Your doctor or nurses will be able to advice about your weight by a calculation called Body Mass Index (BMI). BMI tells you what weight you should be for your height. Number of BMI calculators is available on the Internet.
You can calculate your own body mass index, for this you need to know your height in meters and your weight in kilograms.
- Divide your weight by your height
- Divide the obtained number by your height
BMI Table for Adults: BMI values for adults age 18 or older.
|Category||BMI range – kg/m2|
|Severe Thinness||< 16|
|Moderate Thinness||16 – 17|
|Mild Thinness||17 – 18.5|
|Normal||18.5 – 25|
|Overweight||25 – 30|
|Obese Class I||30 – 35|
|Obese Class II||35 – 40|
|Obese Class III||> 40|
BMI Table for Children and Teens: BMI categorization for children, teens between ages 2 and 20.
|Healthy weight||5% – 85%|
|At risk of overweight||85% – 95%|
Limit the amount of alcohol you drink
The less you drink, the lower your blood pressure will drop. Consume moderate amounts of alcohol. Drinking alcohol can raise your blood pressure, so avoid too much alcohol. If you don’t drink alcohol, you shouldn’t start drinking because it may cause more potential harm than benefit.
- Men should have not more than 2 drinks per day where as women only 1. The effect will be different for each person.
- Alcohol in small amounts can potentially lower your blood pressure by 2 to 4mm Hg.
Eating more vegetable, fruits, pulses will help to lower your blood pressure. Fruits and vegetables are full of vitamins, minerals, potassium and fiber to keep your body healthy.
Adults should eat at least 5 different portions of fruits and vegetables per day. Change your eating habits; you can adopt a healthy diet.
- Dairy Products: Add low fatty dairy products into your diet
- Potassium: Eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables. Take food that is low in salt and high in potassium
- Fiber: Add leafy greens, fruits, whole grain products, nuts and legumes into your diet which are high fiber
Reduce sodium in your diet
People with high blood pressure cut back on salt prevent blood pressure from rising. Choose foods low in salt and sodium. 2.4 grams of sodium a day equals 6 grams i.e., about one teaspoon of table salt a day. To add more flavor to your foods use herbs or spices, garlic and onions rather than salt.
Cigarette smoking like nicotine can affect not only blood pressure but also lung cancer. The nicotine in tobacco products can raise your blood pressure by 10 mm Hg or more up to an hour after you smoke.
Inhaling smoke from others, secondhand smoking puts you at risk of health problems like high blood pressure and heart disease.
Cutback on caffeine
Avoid caffeine, much chocolate, sugar, candy, drinks and excessive dietary fats. Drinking caffeinated beverages can affect temporary or long lasting.
- Two cups of coffee can raise blood pressure
- 4 caffeinated drinks per day prevent withdrawal symptoms such as headaches
Check your pressure within 30 minutes of drinking a cup of coffee or any other caffeinated beverage increases by five to 10 points; you may be sensitive to blood pressure raise with the effect of caffeine.
Reduce your stress
Stress can make blood pressure go up, and over time may contribute to the cause of high blood pressure. Temporary rise in blood pressure, overweight or family history of hypertension tend to stress. Stress rises because of your adrenal gland releases stress hormones which tend to cause your cardiovascular system to overwork.
Stress hormone increases your pulse, respiration and heart rate that you are in need of fighting or running. So try some relaxation techniques:
- Long walk to take the edge off a stressful day long before go to bed
- Set the time around 30 minutes before bed to finish the day must do tasks, personal hygiene things and try deep breathing or meditation
Monitor your blood pressure at home
Monitor you blood pressure by using a sphygmomanometer and a stethoscope. Note down the different ranges in reading your blood pressure.
- Normal blood pressure – 120/80 and below
- Pre-Hypertension blood pressure – 120-139/80-89
- First stage hypertension – 140-159/90-99
- Second stage hypertension – 160/100 and above
If your doctor asks you to take your blood pressure at home, keep in mind:
- Ask your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist to see which monitor you need and to show you how to use it
- Avoid smoking, exercise, and caffeine 30 minutes before checking your blood pressure
- Make sure you are sitting with your feet on the floor and your back is against something
- Relax quietly for 5 minutes before checking your blood pressure
- Keep a list of your blood pressure numbers to share with your doctor, physicians or nurse
- Take your home monitor to the doctor’s office to make sure your monitor is working right
Get support from family and friends
It’s not always easy to lose weight, and you can quickly get bored or give up without encouragement. You need support from your family and friends. This puts you in touch with people who can give you an emotional or morale boost and offer practical tips to cope with your condition.