How To Lower Blood Pressure Quickly And Naturally
When someone has high blood pressure, also known as hypertension, it means their blood is pumping with too much force against the artery walls. The condition can eventually lead to heart disease, stroke, or other cardiac conditions. High blood pressure is extremely common in the United States. More than 103 million people in the country have itand many dont even know theirs is too high, because it can be asymptomatic, says John Osborne, MD, director of cardiology at LowT Center/HerKare and a volunteer for the American Heart Association .
The reason many people dont know? There are often few or no symptoms associated with high blood pressure, says Sondra DePalma, a cardiac physician assistant at PinnacleHealth CardioVascular Institute with UPMC Pinnacle in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, which is why it is called the silent killer.
If youre wondering how to lower blood pressure, luckily, there are natural ways to do so with the proper diet and healthy lifestyle changes.
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I used to think these dramatic drops in blood pressure were something that happened to only a very few people, continues Dr. Fruge, but Ive been here at Pritikin for more than 15 years, and I see results like these every week. This isnt a miracle. Its simply what happens when we start taking good care of ourselves.
Consider Cutting Back On Caffeine
Caffeine raises your blood pressure, but the effect is temporary. It lasts 45 to 60 minutes and the reaction varies from individual to individual .
Some people may be more sensitive to caffeine than others. If youre caffeine-sensitive, you may want to cut back on your coffee consumption, or try .
Research on caffeine, including its health benefits, is in the news a lot. The choice of whether to cut back depends on many individual factors.
One older study indicated that caffeines effect on raising blood pressure is greater if your blood pressure is already high. This same study, however, called for more research on the subject .
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What Is Good Blood Pressure
A good, normal blood pressure readingtaken while seated, with a blood pressure cuffshould be 120/80. The first number is the systolic blood pressure , and the second is the diastolic blood pressure . Anything over that is either considered elevated or high.
Those numbers apply across the board for adults over the age of 18, Dr. Osborne says. He notes that decades ago, good blood pressure numbers varied based on age, limits some people still cling to today. But in actuality, its all standardized to 120/80.
The vast majority of hypertension out there is in adults, he says. Its independent of age. It doesnt matter whether youre 21 or 81. The numbers are the same.
For adults, that is. For kids, its a little different. Blood pressure numbers are based on population and age, and are generally lower than with adults. Theres not a standardized set of guidelines for children, but certainly if you come across a kid that repeatedly has blood pressures that would be high according to the adult category, its high, Dr. Osborne explains.
How Can I Lower My Blood Pressure Immediately
High blood pressure is a dangerous condition that impacts nearly half of adults in the United States according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention . In 2018, close to half a million deaths in the country had high blood pressure as a primary or contributing cause. Occurring when the force of blood pressing against artery walls is consistently too high, high blood pressure requires a long-term care approach. However, there are several ways to temporarily lower your blood pressure in just a matter of minutesgive these methods a try if youd like to lower your blood pressure immediately:
- Take a warm bath or shower. Stay in your shower or bath for at least 15 minutes and enjoy the warm water. This can also help reduce muscle tension.
- Do a breathing exercise. Take a deep breath from your core, hold your breath for about two seconds, then slowly exhale. Pause for a few moments and repeat.
- Relax! Stress is a key contributor to high blood pressure, so do whatever you can to relax. This may be as simple as sitting in a quiet room for a few moments, doing a few stretching exercises, reading a good book, or meditating.
These techniques can provide a quick fix, but its important to implement a long-term care plan to successfully manage your high blood pressure. Some of the most effective ways to lower blood pressure include:
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Reduce And Avoid Chronic Stress
Some stress in life is unavoidable. But if you feel stressed out and tense for much or all of the day, your habits might be affected. People with chronic stress are in danger of unhealthy coping habits like overeating and substance abuse. It can also be difficult to sleep if you are frequently or constantly stressed. All of these things can raise your blood pressure.
To keep your stress in check, make time for healthy activities. Spend some time every day in an activity that relaxes you, such as:
Try Meditation Or Yoga
Mindfulness and meditation, including transcendental meditation, have long been used and studied as methods to reduce stress. A 2012 study notes that one university program in Massachusetts has had more than 19,000 people participate in a meditation and mindfulness program to reduce stress .
Yoga, which commonly involves breathing control, posture, and meditation techniques, can also be effective in reducing stress and blood pressure.
A 2013 review on yoga and blood pressure found an average blood pressure decrease of 3.62 mm Hg diastolic and 4.17 mm Hg systolic when compared to those who didnt exercise. Studies of yoga practices that included breath control, postures, and meditation were nearly twice as effective as yoga practices that didnt include all three of these elements .
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S That Can Help You Lower Your Blood Pressure For The Dot Physical Exam
Now I am going to zip through a few pointers and tips for lowering your blood pressure, which can be for both short and long-term.
However, nothing beats going to the doctor and having the trained professionals guide you and your goals of improving your health.
Like I have said there are a numerous things you can do to keep your blood pressure where it needs to be.
Not just for the DOT physical exam, but for the good of your mind and body. I can offer you a few quick pointers, but again always get proper advice.
Now of course some of the things in the following sentences might seem obvious. But those are the hardest habits to break. So with that in mind, eating a bit healthier, including reducing your salt and sodium intake is a step in the right direction.
Sure, there are a few recommended foods that are readily available! Like your momma always said, Eat your vegetables.
Well it was true then and still is today. But along with that are your fruits. And if you can eat things rich in potassium, well thats all the better for you.
So, that would be things like bananas, potatoes, white beans, leafy greens, and apricots. Also drinking beet juice which I mention earlier is said to help. Some say this could lower your blood pressure within just a couple hours it took three hours to lower mine!
How Long Does It Take To Lower Blood Pressure
It was just a routine doctors visit, at least thats what you thought.
But you heard news that surprised you. You have high blood pressure, your doctor announced, and you need to lower it to avoid some very serious things that high blood pressure can lead to, like strokes and heart attacks.
Many people can reduce their high blood pressure, also known as hypertension, in as little as 3 days to 3 weeks.
Its a lot to take in, and you have questions, including:
How long does it take to lower blood pressure? and
Whats the best way to do it?
Here are answers from the physicians, registered dietitians, and other faculty at the famed Pritikin Longevity Center in Miami, which has helped thousands over the past four decades lower their blood pressure and live well.
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Most Effective Ways To Lower Blood Pressure For Dot Physical
Even under ideal conditions, truck driving is a demanding profession, and truck drivers, regrettably, have a greater incidence of medical issues such as diabetes, hypertension, obesity, and cardiovascular disease than the general population. When competent commercial drivers are scarce, everything trucking firms can do to assist drivers in passing their DOT physical examination is undoubtedly beneficial.
High blood pressure, diabetes, cardiac events, sleep apnea, and weight problems are the top five conditions medical examiners see. The DOT requires several exams, and depending on your specific findings, and you will get a card indicating when you must recertify. Generally, drivers may wait a full year before recertifying, although these dates may vary if you have a history of high blood pressure or heart issues. A stress test is needed and may be performed in one of three ways: physically, chemically, or via a nuclear test. If you have a history of cardiac issues, you must bring a copy of your most recent treadmill exercise tolerance test with you. A stress test may not be necessary if you have undergone open-heart surgery in the past five years.
Blood pressure is another common concern in the driving community that, if not addressed correctly, may escalate into more severe issues. Increased levels may be hazardous and are often linked to behavioral problems such as smoking, excessive coffee use, and irregular sleeping habits.
Building Activity Into Your Day
If the idea of doing exercise isnt for you, being more active in your day-to-day life can make a difference too.
Our lives are much less active than they used to be. More of us have desk jobs, we use cars and public transport to get around, and we have lots of labour-saving devices in our homes.
These simple steps will help you to be more active:
- walk more each day, and dont use the car for short journeys
- take the stairs instead of a lift or escalator
- get off the bus one stop earlier
- if possible, cycle or walk to work
- take the dog out on longer walks
- take a walk during your lunch hour
- think about activities you have enjoyed before, and see if you can take part in them at a local centre
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How To Lower Blood Pressure Quickly
First and most importantly, if you think youre having a complication of high blood pressure such as a stroke, a heart attack, or something else, seek immediate medical attention. Dont try to solve problems like these on your ownyou need comprehensive care.
Otherwise, when you feel your blood pressure may be too high and you want to lower it quickly, Dr. Osborne suggests calming down. Stop what youre doing and sit. Take some deep breaths. If you find that doesnt help, then call your doctor. If its a continual problem, try exercising and altering your diet it can take a few weeks or up to a month to see the effects of that in your blood pressure, so keep plugging away for the best results.
Keep in mind that in some cases, blood pressure medication may be necessary if you cant lower high blood pressure through diet and lifestyle changes. Those drugs will be the quickest path to lower blood pressure levelsoften taking only minutes to even your blood pressure out. Finding the right medication might be the only way to control high blood pressure in some cases, like resistant hypertension. A rule of thumb is to start blood pressure medications and make lifestyle changes. As blood pressure improves with lifestyle modifications, medications can be weaned off.
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The material provided on this site is for educational purposes only and any recommendations are not intended to replace the advice of your physician. You are encouraged to seek advice from a competent medical professional regarding the applicability of any recommendations with regard to your symptoms or condition.
Copyright © 2021 by BlueBeat Media. Thank you for your interest in Jim Donovan. We do not allow republication of our full newsletters and articles. However, you can post a portion of our content with a live link back to our homepage, donovanhealth.com, or a link to the specific article you are quoting from.
Adhana, R., Gupta, R., Dvivedii, J., and Ahmad S., . The influence of the 2:1 yogic breathing technique on essential hypertension. Indian Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology. 57: pp. 38 44. Retrieved from: ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/
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Ten Minutes Of Brisk Or Moderate Walking Three Times A Day
Exercise lowers blood pressure by reducing blood vessel stiffness so blood can flow more easily. The effects of exercise are most noticeable during and immediately after a workout. Lowered blood pressure can be most significant right after you work out.
So, health professionals theorize, the ideal way to combat high blood pressure might be to break up your workout into several sessions throughout the day. In fact, one study found that three 10-minute walks a day more effectively prevented future blood pressure spikes than one 30-minute trek per day.
Medicines For High Blood Pressure
Some people with high blood pressure need to take medication to lower their blood pressure, as well as making the healthy lifestyle changes above. Talk to your doctor about whether you need medication for high blood pressure.
The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners also recommends that you regularly review with your doctor or specialist any medications you are taking for high blood pressure or high cholesterol to assess the ongoing benefits and risks.
The RACGP recommends that if you have raised blood pressure and are concerned about cardiovascular disease but are low risk, talk to your doctor or specialist about whether the benefits will outweigh the risks involved with taking medication to lower your blood pressure.
For further information, visit the Choosing Wisely Australia website.
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Blood Pressure And Your Dot Physical
Truck drivers are required to have blood pressure under 140/90. The medical examiner electronically transmits the result of your physical to the DOT. Instead of stressing over your blood pressure before a physical, its best to address and find ways to keep it lower, not only for your livelihood but for your overall health.
Drivers with blood pressure over 140/90 can still get certified to drive, but the certification will only be for 1 year or less depending on the level of hypertension. To keep your certification, your blood pressure will have to be below 140/90 or you will be disqualified to drive. You can lower your blood pressure with medication, through lifestyle changes or both.
Understanding Your Blood Pressure Numbers Before Your Dot Physical
Its very important for you to understand what your numbers mean and more importantly, how you can lower it naturally if its too high.
The very respected Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN defines the categories of blood pressure categories as follows:
- Normal blood pressure.Your blood pressure is normal if its below 120/80 mm Hg.
- Elevated blood pressure.Elevated blood pressure is a systolic pressure ranging from 120 to 129 mm Hg and a diastolic pressure below 80 mm Hg. Elevated blood pressure tends to get worse over time unless steps are taken to control blood pressure. Elevated blood pressure may also be called prehypertension.
- Stage 1 hypertension.Stage 1 hypertension is a systolic pressure ranging from 130 to 139 mm Hg or a diastolic pressure ranging from 80 to 89 mm Hg.
- Stage 2 hypertension.More-severe hypertension, stage 2 hypertension is a systolic pressure of 140 mm Hg or higher or a diastolic pressure of 90 mm Hg or higher.
- Hypertensive crisis.A blood pressure measurement higher than 180/120 mm Hg is an emergency situation that requires urgent medical care. If you get this result when you take your blood pressure at home, wait five minutes and retest. If your blood pressure is still this high, contact your doctor immediately. If you also have chest pain, vision problems, numbness or weakness, breathing difficulty, or any other signs and symptoms of a stroke or heart attack, call 911 or your local emergency medical number.
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Practice Breathing In Your Left Nose
Breathing deeply through your left nose will relax blood vessels and reduce stress hormones, thereby helping you control your blood pressure.
- Sit on the floor or in a chair in a comfortable position, straight back.
- Place your left hand on your stomach.
- Cover your right nostril with your right thumb.
- Take a deep breath with your left nose, hold for a few seconds, then exhale.
- Breathe slowly and deeply with your left nose for 3-5 minutes.
How Can I Lower My Blood Pressure On The Day Of My Medical Exam
Blood pressure has long been a source of stress for the truck driver. It is frequently referred to as the silent killer by many of us who work in health care. If you suffer high blood pressure it is important that it is controlled and managed. This can be done through natural means such as with exercises, diet and weight loss. It may also be accomplished through medical management such as with the prescription of blood pressure medications. Whatever way you choose, the blood pressure on the day of your exam must still be below 140/90 in order to certify without delay. Lets first take a look at some basic information about blood pressure before getting into managing it on the day of your exam.
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