Dr. Bojana Jankovic Weatherly is an internal and integrative medicine physician with a telemedicine practice serving patients nationwide.
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Your blood push is a vital indicator the your all at once health, i beg your pardon is why security it regularly—and knowledge what the number mean—is important, particularly if you at danger for hypertension, or high blood pressure.


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High blood pressure have to never be ignored, together it deserve to lead to health and wellness complications, diseases like heart disease, retinopathy (eye disease) and also chronic kidney disease, and even death. One easy way to keep tabs on her blood press levels and also ensure they aren’t in one elevated variety is through an at-home blood press monitor. Over there are variety of blood push monitors the end there that make tracking your readings easy, and once you recognize your numbers, you can take the crucial steps to acquire them in ~ a healthy and balanced range.

While medications may be essential to reduced your blood pressure, to reduce high blood press at house is feasible with part dedication. Even if you’re on doctor-prescribed medication, there are procedures you have the right to take to minimize your blood press naturally.


What Is High Blood Pressure?


“Blood push is usually the press within our arteries, which space the tubes that bring blood away from the heart in order to distribute oxygen to the remainder of ours bodies,” claims Sameer K. Mehta, M.D., a cardiologist in ~ Denver love in Lakewood, Colorado.

A blood push reading consists of two numbers: systolic blood pressure, i beg your pardon is the top number, and diastolic blood pressure, i m sorry is the bottom number. A reading reduced than 120/80 mmHg is thought about normal blood pressure, follow to the Centers for condition Control and also Prevention (CDC).

Unless blood pressure is extremely elevated, at the very least three different blood press readings are required to diagnose hypertension, and also one the those readings should be performed exterior the doctor’s office, claims Dr. Mehta. As much as a third of the populace develops high blood pressure readings isolated come the doctor’s office since of a phenomenon well-known as “white coat hypertension,” i m sorry is when your blood pressure readings are greater in a doctor’s office exclusively, frequently thought to be resulted in by the stress and anxiety of gift there.

“High blood pressure method that this repetitively elevated press is an ext than what her organs and arteries can handle,” says Aseem Desai, M.D., a cardiologist with Providence Mission Hospital in southern California. “As a result, the heart and also arteries work-related harder to supply blood and oxygen come organs. If this occurs, component of our organs carry out not function properly and/or can die.” for instance, if the heart has to pump against high blood press constantly, the love muscle deserve to hypertrophy (enlarge) and also eventually shed its ability to role properly.

High blood pressure have the right to increase your hazard of emerging a heart attack, stroke, death, kidney failure, eye damage and also heart failure.


In enhancement to determining whether you need medications, which girlfriend should comment on with her doctor, healthy and balanced lifestyle selections can make a far-ranging difference in reducing high blood pressure. Shot incorporating the complying with changes and habits right into your daily life.

1. Lose Weight if you’re Overweight

Weight loss is an important part of reducing high blood pressure, particularly for human being with obesity, as it’s a solid risk factor for hypertension. Dr. Mehta says civilization who room overweight deserve to have in between a two- to six-fold rise in hazard of arising hypertension.

“With much less weight, the heart and also arteries execute not need to work as hard,” states Dr. Desai. “The love muscle and the muscles in the arteries execute not thicken. Thickening can lead to further increases in blood pressure due to the fact that of reduced give or elasticity the blood vessels.”

Talk come your doctor or registered dietitian around a for sure weight loss setup that will job-related for you, or take into consideration trying a support application like Noom. “Even modest load loss in these patients—4 to 10 pounds—is linked with a significant reduction in blood pressure levels,” claims Dr. Mehta. However, a 2013 research of much more than 740 human being found irreversible reductions in blood pressure just persisted v weight lose exceeding 2% the the who initial weight<2>Tyson CC, Lawrence JA, Vollmer WM, et al. Influence of 5 Year Weight adjust on Blood Pressure: outcomes From The load Loss maintain Trial. J Clin Hypertension. 2013;15(7):458-464. .


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2. Exercise

Regular practice not just aids in load loss, but also helps diminish high blood pressure. A 2016 study discovered blood pressure decreased in the hrs after an exercise session nevertheless of a person’s age, sex and also other characteristics<3>Carpio-Rivera E, Moncada-Jiménez J, Salazar-Rojas W, Solera-Herrera A. Acute impacts of exercise on Blood Pressure: A Meta-Analytic Investigation. Arq Bras Cardiology. 2016;106(5):422-433. . This result can an outcome in “somewhere between a 10 and also 15 mmHg palliation in systolic blood press levels,” states Dr. Mehta.

Most medical professionals recommend at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic practice each day. “Aerobic practice gets the heart rate up in a gradual and consistent fashion, help to large the heart and also arteries, and likewise increases blood circulation to the organs,” says Dr. Desai.

If girlfriend can’t do 30 minutes, Dr. Desai proposal at the very least 15 come 20 minutes a day, five to 7 days a week. Some aerobic exercise choices include walking, running, swimming, utilizing an elliptical machine, cycling and also playing tennis.

3. Decrease your Salt Intake

“Salt is the adversary of high blood pressure,” claims Dr. Desai. Once you eat too much salt, it increases the amount of liquid that enters the bloodstream and also arteries native the surrounding tissue, i m sorry raises the press in the arteries.

While you may not have to remove salt from her diet completely, protect against foods very high in salt choose chips, french fries, salted nuts, soups, store-bought salad dressings, handle foods and also cheese.

4. Avoid Excess Caffeine

Drinking too lot coffee or too countless energy drinks that save caffeine isn’t recommended for human being with high blood pressure. “Caffeine is a kind of adrenaline,” states Dr. Desai. “It constricts the arteries and also raises the love rate, both the which rise blood pressure.”

If you have high blood pressure, ask your medical professional whether you need to change your morning coffee habit, as Dr. Mehta claims high levels of caffeine deserve to worsen blood pressure control. The Food and Drug administration (FDA) considers the tantamount of 4 cups the coffee a job (400 milligrams) safe for the basic population, yet most professionals recommend 200 milligrams or much less (two cup of coffee) for human being with created hypertension, claims Dr. Mehta.

5. Drink Water

Staying hydrated may be an important way to keep your blood press reading in a regular range. “When you’re dehydrated, the body produces stress hormones to preserve blood flow to organs,” says Dr. Desai. This solution can boost blood pressure.

Meanwhile, a 2015 study found a link between dehydration and high blood pressure, although an ext research is needed<4>El-Sharkawy AM, Sahota O, Lobo DN. Acute and also Chronic results of Hydration status on Health. Nutrition Review. 2015;73(2):97-109. . Reducing her caffeine intake and also drinking water on regular basis are both effective ways to prevent dehydration.

6. Ditch Alcohol

A large 2019 study conducted by the American college of Cardiology uncovered moderate alcohol consumption, identified as 7 to 13 drinks a week, have the right to substantially rise risk of high blood pressure<5>Aladin A, Chevli P, Ahmad MI, Rasool S, Herrington D. Alcohol Consumption and Risk of Hypertension. J am Coll Cardiol. 2019;73:12. .

Alcohol can increase her body weight, deplete the body of magnesium and also potassium, and dehydrate you, follow to Dr. Desai. Those more, alcohol increases stress levels, which cause elevated blood pressure gradually as well, that says.


7. Eat an ext Foods High in Magnesium

A little study in the International journal of Hypertension discovered magnesium supplementation can reduce blood press in small amounts<6>Nguyen H, Odelola OA, Rangaswami J, Amanullah A. A testimonial of Nutritional determinants in Hypertension Management. Worldwide Journal that Hypertension. 2013;698940. . Talk to her doctor before taking magnesium supplements, particularly if you have actually kidney disease. Friend can also safely incorporate high-magnesium foods into your diet. Dr. Desai recommends foods items like leafy green vegetables and unsalted almonds.

8. Stop Processed Foods

A healthy diet plays crucial part in reduce high blood pressure, so numerous doctors introduce reducing consumption of handle foods. Processed foods are often loaded v sodium and also saturated fats, 2 things people with hypertension want to avoid.

“A great rule of thumb is to have actually multiple color of food on your plate,” states Dr. Desai. He proposal eating much more berries, bananas, beets, dark chocolate, kiwis, watermelon, oats, garlic, lentils, pomegranates, cinnamon, unsalted pistachios and also fermented foods items like yogurt.

9. Minimize Stress with Meditation and Rest

“Chronic stress can lead to chronic elevations in the stress and anxiety hormones cortisol and adrenaline,” claims Dr. Desai. “These hormone constrict the arteries and also cause weight gain, which additional increases blood pressure.”

He recommends reducing stress and anxiety by using breathing exercises, practicing meditation, completing physics exercise, practicing yoga, logging top quality sleep, taking breaks throughout the day, security time in nature, listening come music and also eating a balanced diet.

10. Stop Smoking

“Smoking leader to constriction of the arteries acutely, and also long-term use considerably contributes to the advancement of high blood pressure,” states Dr. Mehta. One examine in Hypertension found smoking can cause an immediate yet temporary boost in blood pressure<7>Primatesta P, Falaschetti E, Gupta S, Marmot MG, Poulter NR. Association between Smoking and Blood Pressure. Hypertension. 2001;37:187-193. . Take the procedures you must quit smoking if you have hypertension.

11. Eat Dark Chocolate

Small amounts of dark chocolate aren’t simply tasty—they might help lower blood press as well. One big 2010 research found people who didn’t have actually hypertension and ate more dark chocolate had reduced blood press than those who ate much less dark chocolate<8>Al-Safi SA, Ayoub NM, Al-Doghim I, Aboul-Enein FH. Dark Chocolate and Blood Pressure: A Novel study From Jordan. Curr medicine Deliv. 2011;8(6):595-9. .

Dr. Desai note the dark coco should have high quantities of cocoa—aim because that at least 70%—and have to be low in sugar. “It’s most likely that a link in dark cacao known together flavonoids publication a substance well-known as nitric oxide, i beg your pardon relaxes blood vessels,” states Dr. Mehta.

12. Shot the DASH Diet

If you’re unsure just how to readjust your diet to reduced blood pressure, Dr. Mehta recommends trying the Dietary ideologies to protect against Hypertension (DASH) diet, which he claims is “the finest studied dietary method to helping with hypertension.” It consists of foods items rich in potassium, calcium, magnesium, fiber and protein and also low in saturated fat and sodium.


In many cases, the cause of high blood pressure deserve to be challenging to determine. “At the very least 90% that blood push is defined as crucial hypertension, i beg your pardon basically means there is no distinct cause identified,” claims Dr. Mehta. According to the CDC, hypertension develops over time and can frequently occur because of unhealthy lifestyle choices like bad diet and also a lack of exercise.

According come Dr. Mehta, less than 10% that patients have actually identifiable causes of high blood pressure, which can include:

Tumors in the adrenal glands Aorta abnormalities Narrowing that the kidney arteries Thyroid abnormalities

Dr. Desai adds other risk determinants include:

A family history of high blood pressure obesity Physical inactivity A high-salt diet Alcohol and also caffeine use

According to the CDC, diabetes deserve to increase your risk, too, and also hypertension can occur throughout pregnancy. Some medications, together as oral contraceptives, nonsteroid anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) favor ibuprofen, corticosteroids, antidepressants, load loss medications and antacids that contain sodium, can exacerbate hypertension as well.


Doctors and also researchers like Dr. Desai refer to high blood press as “the quiet killer” due to the fact that there frequently are no symptoms, which is why the so essential to monitor your blood pressure, particularly if friend are already at risk.

However, a small number of people do experience symptoms, according to Dr. Desai, which might include:

Headache negative vision Shortness that breath Blood in to pee Dizziness Chest pain nose bleeds

If you have actually a family history of high blood push or any kind of of the risk factors or symptoms noted above, make an appointment v your physician to comment on your blood pressure, states Dr. Mehta. Girlfriend should additionally get it checked at the very least once a year.

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If your systolic blood pressure is better than or same to 180 mmHg or your diastolic blood pressure is greater than or equal to 120 mmHg, call your medical professional immediately. If, in enhancement to this blood press readings, you have actually symptoms including headache and chest pain, contact 911.