You Can Fight High Blood Pressure
While heart disease is still the No. 1 killer in the United States and around the world, death rates have decreased significantly. Earlier and better treatment of high blood pressure has played a key role in that decrease.
Written by American Heart Association editorial staff and reviewed by science and medicine advisers. See our editorial policies and staff.
Take The Right Blood Pressure Medication
There are several types of hypertension medications that work in different ways to control blood pressure. These include ACE inhibitors, beta-blockers, and vasodilators, among others.
The different types of medications also have their own sets of side effects. Since some medications may interact with other health conditions you have, its important to discuss your health history and hypertension risk factors to determine the best drug to treat your high blood pressure. When starting a new blood pressure medication, monitor for complications and talk to your doctor if you have chest pain, fainting, swelling, or breathing problems.
Cut Back On Sugar And Refined Carbohydrates
A 2010 study compared a low-carb diet to a low-fat diet. The low-fat diet included a diet drug. Both diets produced weight loss, but the low-carb diet was much more effective in lowering blood pressure.
The low-carb diet lowered blood pressure by 4.5 mm Hg diastolic and 5.9 mm Hg systolic. The diet of low-fat plus the diet drug lowered blood pressure by only 0.4 mm Hg diastolic and 1.5 mm Hg systolic .
A 2012 analysis of low-carb diets and heart disease risk found that these diets lowered blood pressure by an average of 3.10 mm Hg diastolic and 4.81 mm Hg systolic .
Another side effect of a low-carb, low-sugar diet is that you feel fuller longer, because youre consuming more protein and fat.
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Nix Your Nicotine Addiction
Each cigarette you smoke temporarily raises blood pressure for several minutes after you finish. If youre a heavy smoker, your blood pressure can stay elevated for extended periods of time.
Even secondhand smoke can put you at increased risk for high blood pressure and heart disease.
Drinking a glass of red wine with your dinner is perfectly fine. It might even offer heart-health benefits when done in moderation.
But drinking excessive amounts of alcohol can lead to lots of health issues, including high blood pressure.
Excessive drinking can also reduce the effectiveness of certain blood pressure medications.
What does drinking in moderation mean? The AHA recommends that men limit their consumption to two alcoholic drinks per day. Women should limit their intake to one alcoholic drink per day.
One drink equals:
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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Foods That Lower Blood Pressure Quickly
Because diet can greatly affect blood pressure, many people wonder what they can eat to lower blood pressure fast. While there is not a single food that lowers blood pressure immediately, enjoying a healthy diet can help manage hypertensive condition.
Letâs look at what scientific research has revealed as to the best foods to eat to control hypertension.
Consume Pomegranate Juice In The High Blood Pressure Diet
Another beverage that is good to drink if you are trying to lower blood pressure quickly is pomegranate juice.
One small trial involving men with high blood pressure found that consuming 150 ml of pomegranate juice helped lower blood pressure fast. Most participants in the trial noted a reduction in blood pressure within a 4 to 6-hour period. The researchers noted that pomegranate juice should be recommended on a high blood pressure diet.
You can learn more about the health benefits of pomegranate in this article.
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Eat More Potassium And Less Sodium
Increasing your potassium intake and cutting back on salt can also lower your blood pressure .
Potassium is a double winner: It lessens the effects of salt in your system, and also eases tension in your blood vessels. However, diets rich in potassium may be harmful to individuals with kidney disease, so talk to your doctor before increasing your potassium intake.
Its easy to eat more potassium so many foods are naturally high in potassium. Here are a few:
Foods labeled low-fat are usually high in salt and sugar to compensate for the loss of fat. Fat is what gives food taste and makes you feel full.
Cutting down on or even better, cutting out processed food will help you eat less salt, less sugar, and fewer refined carbohydrates. All of this can result in lower blood pressure.
Make it a practice to check labels. According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration , a sodium listing of 5 percent or less on a food label is considered low, while 20 percent or more is considered high (
What Are The Long
High blood pressure damages artery walls, allowing deposits like cholesterol and plaque to accumulate and making the heart work harder to supply blood to organs. Over time, untreated hypertension can cause angina, peripheral artery disease, heart attack, stroke, kidney damage, vision loss, and other complications.
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Eat Fruits And Vegetables
It is difficult to pick the right foods when you are traveling, especially when sweets and sugary items are less of a hassle to carry with you. Take some time in your daily routine to prepare snack foods to take with you that are high in potassium and low on sugar/salt content. We have a great detailed source for good habits to pickup for 2020 if you want more information
SNACKS THAT CUT CRAVINGS AND ARE DELICIOUS
- Blueberries, Strawberries, Raspberries
Decrease Your Salt Intake
Salt is the enemy of high blood pressure, says Dr. Desai. When you eat too much salt, it increases the amount of fluid that enters the bloodstream and arteries from the surrounding tissue, which raises the pressure in the arteries.
While you may not have to remove salt from your diet completely, avoid foods very high in salt like chips, french fries, salted nuts, soups, store-bought salad dressings, processed foods and cheese.
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How To Lower Blood Pressure In Minutes
Disclaimer: Results are not guaranteed*** and may vary from person to person***.
High blood pressure can hit at any time, and the results can be devastating. When an acute jump occurs, knowing how to lower blood pressure in minutes can be the difference between life and death.
This is especially true if youre one of the 75 million American adults suffering from hypertension , or one of the other 75 million with prehypertension. When a boost hits, its good to know how to make blood pressure go down quickly.
Your blood pressure rises and falls throughout the day, and this is completely normal. Stress, anxiety, exercise, and activity can all lead to increases, while relaxation, getting ready for bed, and sleep can all bring it back down.
But not all high blood pressure is safe, and the longer it stays at a high rate, the more health risks you assume. Risks include acute responses like sweating, fainting or shortness of breath, and more severe issues like heart disease and heart attack can arise. So when stress hits, knowing how to lower blood pressure quickly can be a great health benefit.
Cacao Powder To Bring Down Blood Pressure Naturally
One of the best drinks for high blood pressure to enjoy is hot chocolate made from cacao powder.
One study into the effect of cacao drinks on hypertension found that they can help reduce blood pressure by around 4 mmHg.
Other studies have found that the rich antioxidant content in cacao drinks is good for helping to manage high blood pressure in elderly people.
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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 .
Indulge In Dark Chocolate
The sweet is rich in flavanols, which relax blood vessels and boost blood flow, and research suggests that regular dark chocolate consumption could lower your blood pressure. Experts havent determined an ideal percentage of cocoa, says Vivian Mo, M.D., clinical associate professor of medicine at the University of Southern California, but the higher you go, the more benefits youll get. Chocolate cant be your main strategy for managing blood pressure, Mo saysbut when youre craving a treat, its a healthy choice.
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What’s Considered High Blood Pressure
Blood pressure is the force exerted by blood as it pushes against the walls of your blood vessels. It’s generally reported as two numbers: an upper number, called the systolic pressure, and a lower number, called the diastolic pressure. Normal blood pressure in adults is 120/80.
The American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association guidelines published in 2017 define high blood pressure as 130/80 or higher. And chronic, long-term high blood pressure increases your likelihood of a heart attack, stroke, peripheral vascular disease and kidney disease.
High blood pressure statistics show hypertension affects nearly half of all adults in the U.S. but an estimated 1 in 3 don’t know they have it, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Regular Exercise To Reduce High Blood Pressure
The Journal of the American Heart Association reports on a review of trials involving the effects of exercise training on blood pressure. The results of 95 trials found that regular exercise and resistance training lower both systolic and diastolic blood pressure.
Even less vigorous exercising such as walking can also help to remedy hypertension. One study found that moderate walking can help to lower blood pressure naturally and reduce the risk of coronary heart disease.
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Drugs Vs Lifestyle Change
First, keep in mind that drugs have limited success. Most studies on diuretics and other blood pressure-lowering drugs suggest they lower the risk of cardiovascular events among those with blood pressure between 140/90 and 159/99 by 15 to 20%.3 The problem is, with this range of blood pressure, the risk of cardiovascular-related deaths has increased by 300 to 400% compared to people with normal blood pressure.
So, while treating hypertension with drugs is generally better than no treatment, it is far from a cure, asserts Dr. Fruge.
Try Meditation Or Deep Breathing
While these two behaviors could also fall under stress reduction techniques, meditation and deep breathing deserve specific mention.
Both meditation and deep breathing may activate the parasympathetic nervous system. This system is engaged when the body relaxes, slowing the heart rate, and lowering blood pressure.
Theres quite a bit of research in this area, with studies showing that different styles of meditation appear to have benefits for lowering blood pressure .
Deep breathing techniques can also be quite effective.
In one study, participants were asked to either take six deep breaths over the course of 30 seconds or simply sit still for 30 seconds. Those who took breaths lowered their blood pressure more than those who just sat .
Try guided meditation or deep breathing. Heres a video to get you started.
Bottom line: Both meditation and deep breathing can activate the parasympathetic nervous system, which helps slow your heart rate and lower blood pressure.
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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.
Eat Garlic Or Take Garlic Extract Supplements
Fresh garlic or garlic extract are both widely used to lower blood pressure .
According to one clinical study, a time-release garlic extract preparation may have a greater effect on blood pressure than regular garlic powder tablets .
One 2012 review noted a study of 87 people with high blood pressure that found a diastolic reduction of 6 mm Hg and a systolic reduction of 12 mm Hg in those who consumed garlic, compared to people without any treatment (
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Drink Milk Coconut Water And Cranberry Juice
Milk is a superfood. It consists of potassium, calcium, and Vitamin D. These nutrients are directly proven to lower blood pressure immediately.;
Coconut water is highly rich in potassium, electrolytes, and minerals. These nutrients are an immediate solution to hypertension.
Not only that, at times, deficiency of these minerals can cause hypertension.
A study in West Indian Medical Journal proved that coconut water drops the pressure by margins.
Cranberry juice is rich in proanthocyanidins. This helps in reducing high BP by dilating blood vessels and increasing blood flow.;
Articles published in Nature, 2016 proves that berry juice lowers systolic blood pressure.
However, milk is not suitable for everyone as people have lactose intolerance.
Thus, consultation with a doctor before the change in diet is advisable.
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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Drink A Full Glass Of Water 45 Minutes Before Your Exam
If you can remove all types of beverages except for water for a week before your DOT physical, you will have a better chance of lowering your blood pressure. If this is not in the cards for you, then a full glass of water 45 minutes before you take your test will help flush your system, prepare you for your urine sample, and lower your sodium levels.