10 lifestyle change for managing blood pressure without medication

Non-Pharmacological Ways Of Managing High Blood Pressure

High Blood pressure, also known as Hypertension, is what we call in the medical world, a silent killer. Why is that? The reason we call it this is because many people don’t know they have hypertension until it is advanced, or their doctor or healthcare provider notices it during treatment for other diseases. According to Center For Disease Control, about 360,000 died in 2013 with the primary cause of death being diabetes

For patients living with Hypertension, controlling high blood pressure doesn’t always mean relying on medication. Lifestyle adjustments can play a significant role in managing this condition and reducing the risk of heart disease. In this article, I will break up some of the home remedies you can practice at home to keep your blood pressure in check.

The measures I have provided have strong research to back them, and you can click on the reference links to read more. Here are ten effective ways to keep your blood pressure in check without medication:

Shed Excess Weight and Watch Your Waistline:

High blood pressure often correlates with weight gain. Obesity can also lead to conditions like sleep apnea, which further elevates blood pressure. Managing to Lose even a small amount of weight can have a very important impact on your diabetes management. Aim for gradual weight loss and monitor your waistline, ensuring it stays within healthy parameters.

According to a study by Oxford Academy, waist size is one of the biggest independent predictors of blood pressure levels[1] For a good waist size, exercise and diet are key. Check out the Medical Advice Channel nutrition article that can help with the foods required for Hypertension control.

Prioritize Regular Exercise:

exercising can help control blood pressure

Physical activity is a powerful tool for lowering blood pressure. Incorporate at least 20-30 minutes of moderate exercise into your daily routine. Activities like walking, jogging, cycling, swimming, or dancing can all contribute to better heart health. More importantly, strength training exercises should be included at least twice or thrice every single week.

One hack I recommend to my patients is that if you have a car, park one block from your office so that you can walk for five to 10 minutes, if you have an elevator at work, use the stairs. Do one floor of stairs, then use the elevator the rest of the way for starters, then increase gradually. In summary, be as active as you can.

Embrace a Healthy Diet:

Opt for a diet rich in whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and low-fat dairy products while minimizing saturated fats and cholesterol. Eating plans like the DASH diet or the Mediterranean diet have been shown to reduce blood pressure significantly. Aim for adequate potassium intake from natural food sources rather than supplements.

Reduce Sodium Intake:

Cutting back on sodium can significantly improve heart health and lower blood pressure. Read food labels carefully, choose low-sodium options, and minimize processed foods in your diet.

A simple logic for this is this: If you have a lot of sodium in your blood, which as we know is in the vessels, attracts water into the vessels(salt attracts water), therefore increasing the amount of fluid in the vessels, thus high blood pressure. Therefore, decreasing the amount of sodium in your diet means less sodium in your body and lower and well-maintained blood pressure.

Moderate Alcohol Consumption:

According to The Health Dietician website, you should limit alcohol intake to no more than one drink per day for women and two drinks per day for men. Excessive alcohol consumption can raise blood pressure and interfere with the effectiveness of blood pressure medications.

Your blood vessels naturally are responsible through their muscles for controlling blood pressure, by contracting and expanding as the situation requires. Alcohol intake interferes with this, thus causing or even worsening Hypertension[2].

Quit Smoking:

Smoking is one of the major risk factors for high blood pressure and cardiovascular heart diseases. Quitting smoking lowers blood pressure, reduces the risk of cardiovascular problems, and improves overall health. Just like Alcohol, smoking interferes with your blood vessels’ ability to regulate blood pressure, by stiffening your blood vessels(atherosclerosis)

Prioritize Quality Sleep:

Poor sleep habits can contribute to hypertension. Maintain a consistent sleep schedule, create a relaxing sleep environment, avoid stimulants like caffeine and nicotine before bedtime, and limit daytime naps to improve the quality of your sleep.

Ensure you sleep at a specific time every day to form a good sleeping habit and have at least eight hours of sleep. A good practice for those who have trouble sleeping is to avoid using your smartphone at least one hour before you sleep, because the blue light from your smartphone may affect your ability to sleep[3].

Manage Stress:

Chronic stress can elevate blood pressure over time. Identify sources of stress in your life and find healthy ways to cope, such as prioritizing tasks, practicing relaxation techniques, and seeking support from friends, family, or support groups.

Monitor Blood Pressure Regularly:

Keep track of your blood pressure at home and attend regular check-ups with your healthcare provider. Home monitoring can help you gauge the effectiveness of lifestyle changes and medication, ensuring better control of your blood pressure.

You can always visit your nearest healthcare facility for a blood pressure checkup, or even better, buy your blood pressure machine from e-commerce sites like Amazon and Jumia.

<<<Click here to Buy a blood pressure Machine from Amazon>>>

Seek Support:

Surround yourself with supportive friends and family who encourage healthy habits. Consider joining a support group for additional encouragement and practical tips on managing your condition effectively. Support groups will help you see that you are not alone, and you will be encouraged when you see other people who can manage their hypertension and are living a normal healthy life, which is the ultimate goal.

By Henf Henf

Am Henfrey Wangulu, a Clinical Officer/Physician associate based in Kenya. I am a Tech and Health enthusiast and in my free time, I like Swimming, Art and socializing with other people

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