How to Lower Blood Pressure Naturally and Prevent Hypertension
High blood pressure affects an estimated 68 million Americans. The effects of high blood pressure wreak havoc on the heart and kidneys, greatly increasing the risk of heart disease, strokes, and diabetes. Obesity tends to increase the odds of becoming hypertensive, as it forces the body to pump blood to the tissues at a faster rate. May is National Hypertension Awareness Month, and here are a few tips to help control and prevent hypertension.
- Shoot for a diet of less than 2,000 milligrams of sodium. For those with high blood pressure aim for less than 1,500 milligrams of per day.
- Consume plenty of potassium from vegetables, fruit, and legumes. Potassium can help counter excess sodium.
- Get at least 30 minutes of physical activity per day, including walking, stretching, or any type of movement. Check with your doctor about a safe exercise regimen.
- Maintain a healthy body weight by following a low-fat, high-fiber vegan diet. Herbs and spices such as garlic can also help lower blood pressure.
For more information about healthy lifestyle changes to help reduce or prevent high blood pressure, please read the hypertension fact sheet from The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine.