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High blood pressure is common among Americans. If you are looking for natural ways to lower blood pressure, take a look at some of these natural remedies.
High blood pressure … it’s known as “the silent killer.” That’s because high blood pressure oftentimes shows no symptoms. But high blood pressure (hypertension) is a major contributor to heart disease and stroke. These are two of the leading causes of death. And it’s estimated that one-third of American adults have high blood pressure.
For those looking to go the all-natural route, there are natural ways to lower blood pressure. At the very least, one may take medication for high blood pressure as well as consume herbs on a regular basis. These herbs have been clinically proven to lower blood pressure. We’ll take a look at some of these natural substances to combat high blood pressure in a moment.
But before we do, let’s get some common-sense lifestyle factors out of the way first…
Natural Ways to Lower Blood Pressure with Lifestyle
Following some of these lifestyle tips may reduce blood pressure without even needing to take natural herbs. These lifestyle factors include:
- Losing Weight: For some people, shedding pounds may be close to impossible. They may struggle in ditching junk food and adopting a low-carb diet. That’s because hormone levels may be severely imbalanced. This happens after years of poor diet, lifestyle, etc. Those in this situation find it very difficult to lose weight. Also, if someone has elevated levels of heavy metals, it can also interfere with weight loss. But, for most people who are able to lose even just 10 pounds, blood pressure levels can be reduced to healthier levels.
- Exercise: If you are severely out of shape, consult with your physician first before starting any exercise program.
- Limit alcohol, white table salt, junk food, and quit smoking.
Natural Ways to Lower Blood Pressure with Herbs
Now that the lifestyle factors are out of the way (even though they may be obvious, if only one person is influenced to take action by reading this, it’s entirely worth stating the obvious), let’s take a look at some natural herbs for lowering blood pressure:
The common cinnamon spice has been shown in many studies to decrease fasting plasma glucose levels in patients with type 2 diabetes. Just take a look at this one in Annals of Family Medicine. When blood sugar levels are high, high blood pressure may be a corollary condition. When both are present, the chance of heart attack or stroke is greatly increased. Cinnamon, by lowering blood glucose, may also reduce blood pressure levels.
A favorite yogurt topping or morning smoothie staple, flaxseed is a vegetarian source of Omega 3 essential fatty acids. Omega 3 has several proven health benefits. This review of natural herbs in the treatment of hypertension concluded that flaxseed may protect against atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (which may be caused by high blood pressure) through a number of mechanisms. These mechanisms include reducing blood cholesterol levels and inflammation as well as improving glucose tolerance. The study concluded that daily consumption of 15 to 50 grams per day of flaxseed reduce total cholesterol and LDLs (though the researchers weren’t exactly sure how flaxseed does this). High blood cholesterol is a contributing factor of high blood pressure.
For centuries, Asian cultures have consumed ginger for a several health benefits, including improving high blood pressure. The same review of natural herbs for hypertension as above concluded ginger root improves blood circulation and relaxes muscles surrounding blood vessels. And, the crude extract of ginger reduces arterial blood pressure.
Though it may spurn a potential amorous encounter, garlic increases nitric oxide production. This results in smooth muscle relaxation and vasodilatation (when blood vessels dilate; this decreases blood pressure).
Technically, soluble fiber isn’t considered an herb. But, let’s just give it the benefit of the doubt and lump it in with these natural ways to lower blood pressure. That’s because whole oats may help remove cholesterol from the blood, which may in turn decrease blood pressure. (For clinical proof of fiber’s ability to reduce blood pressure, see this review in Journal of Family Practice.)
A review of green tea in the Archives of Internal Medicine concluded habitual moderate strength green or oolong tea consumption for one year significantly reduces the risk of developing hypertension. A moderate amount was considered only a half-cup or more per day!
Other Natural Ways to Lower Blood Pressure
There are several other natural ingredients (herbs, food, supplements with multiple vitamins, minerals and compounds) that may help lower blood pressure. Some of these include celery, breadfruit, capparis, black beans (and lots of other legumes), hawthorn, soybeans (opt for fermented soy) and good-old fashioned carrots. So, why not try some of these natural methods to see if you can lower your blood pressure naturally.
Warning: if you’re taking medication for hypertension do not stop taking it even if you think you can get your blood pressure back to normal levels (less than 120 over 80) by natural means. Consult with your doctor first before discontinuing.