How to Manage High Blood Pressure Through Diet
Been to your doctor lately? Did they take your blood pressure and give you that warning "You need to think about lowering your blood pressure levels or go onto medication."? Given that high blood pressure is a precursor to serious conditions such as heart attacks, strokes, and kidney disease it's an excellent idea to heed your doctor's warning and start actively doing something about it.
If avoiding medication is your natural inclination then there are natural approaches you can take to bring about a decrease in your blood pressure, these most notably being around diet and exercise. Whether used in isolation or in combination here are several tried and true techniques you can use. They don't require expensive or unusual food, gym memberships or other financial outlays. With a little effort, you should be able to incorporate these into your daily routine for little or no cost at all.
You don’t need fad foods or abstention from food groups to improve your diet and boost your circulatory system. A varied diet with a good range of vegetables, fruits, meats and dairy foods is neither difficult nor expensive to maintain and ensures you receive a good cross-section of essential vitamins and minerals.
Foods high in potassium have a demonstrated ability to help in the maintenance of healthy blood pressure levels. Including potatoes, tomatoes, bananas, peas, beans and dried fruits on a regular basis in your diet will keep up your potassium levels.
You don't even need to give up alcohol. Drinking alcohol on a regular basis (particularly red wine) has been shown to assist with regulating blood pressure. Mind you, this refers to light alcohol consumption (approximately one standard drink a day).
Too many of us lead sedentary lives due to the type of jobs we have. A major risk for high blood pressure is sitting behind a computer most of the day with little opportunity for regular exercise.
One of the best and cheapest ways to lower your blood pressure is simply by walking. As little as twenty minutes a day for five days a week can be enough to improve the way your heart pumps blood throughout your body. Keep in mind that you should be aiming for a fairly brisk walking pace rather than a gentle amble to get the most benefit.
Start your walking program by including a short walk during your lunch break. Extend your walks when you can on weekends, walk to the shops occasionally; take the dog out for an evening walk. If you start doing these types of activities on a regular basis, they will soon become a healthy habit.
See Your Doctor Regularly
If your doctor has already pointed out to you that dropping your high blood pressure is important, you should visit the surgery on a regular basis to monitor how successful your approach has been. If your best effort doesn't seem to be working it may be an indication of a more serious underlying problem, and it's always better to be safe than sorry in these situations. Even if in the long-run you end up having to take blood pressure lowering medication, your approach to diet and exercise can lower the level of medication required.