The diagnosis of elevated blood pressure is not one to be ignored. Thankfully there are some key lifestyle modifications that can significantly reduce and aid in maintaining a normal blood pressure.

These lifestyle changes are not to replace the need for medical evaluation, however, when used together, it leads to a longer lasting improvement in not only blood pressure, but also overall health. 

So lets dive in.

  1. Exercise regularly – Exercise is not only for those looking to shed some pounds.  It has been reported that regular exercising can shave off about 5 to 7mmHg off your blood pressure.  various physiological pathway studied that highlights the direct effect of exercises on dilating the arteries thereby leading to lower blood pressure.  At least 30 minutes of moderate intensity exercise 5 days a week will get you on your way.
  2. Reduce your dietary salt intake. Particularly amongst American, the CDC reports our daily limite to no more than 1500mg of Sodium a day, it is very easy to consume more than this.  Excessive salt leads to water retention within the blood vessel and adds to the increased pressure. The CDC reports African Americans develop high blood pressure more often and at a younger age than any other ethnicity. Start looking at those labels, avoid fast food and limit your intake to no more than 1500mg daily
  3. Lose weight:  Obesity is directly linked to elevated blood pressure. Processed food are laden with refined carbohydrates and excess salt to preserve shelf lives. These in addition contribute to weight gain and sodium retention
  4. Develop healthier ways to manage stress, – stressors can sometimes be inevitable however our reaction to stressful situations have direct effect on blood pressure. During stress, high level of cortisol the major stress hormone is released. Chronic cortisol stimulation contributes to sodium and water retention further leading to increased blood pressure. Managing stress is a topic of discussion on its own however seeking help through counselling, coaching, music therapy, getting enough sleep can get you on the path to a stress-free life.

References:

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/318716#fifteen-remedies https://www.belmarrahealth.com/blood-pressure-exercise-guidelines-safe-exercise-tips-lower-high-blood-pressure/ https://www.huffpost.com/entry/sodium-the-silent-killer-of-african-americans_b_4937023


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