Blood pressure is the pressure of blood pushing against the walls of your arteries, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Arteries carry blood from your heart to other parts of your body.
The normal blood pressure is 120/ 80 mm Hg. When the blood pressure exceeds the healthy range, there is immense pressure on the tissues and blood vessels.
There are no visible symptoms of hypertension unless the heart is significantly damaged. Therefore, it is also considered a silent killer and we need to take care of ourselves before the condition worsens.
Here are a few tips that can be helpful.
Exercise is one of the most effective ways to lower the blood pressure. It makes the heart stronger, making it pump blood more effectively, lowering the pressure on the arteries.
According to PubMed Central, moderate to high-intensity exercise can improve our heart's health. Walking for at least 30 minutes can be helpful as well.
Eat less Salt
People consume foods high in salt because of their processed and readymade food choices. According to BMJ, high salt intake is linked to high blood pressure, strokes and heart diseases.
Cut down on excess sodium, replace salt with fresh herbs and spices, and processed foods with freshly prepared meals.
Avoid Excess Alcohol
According to the US NIH, high alcohol intake is linked with 16 percent high blood pressure cases. According to PubMed Central, the adverse affects of drinking too much can neutralise moderate alcohol consumption that has been found to be effective for the heart's health.
Increase Your Potassium Intake
According to the JAMA, modern eating habits have increased the salt intake, reducing the potassium in food which is an important mineral and helps the body to get rid of excess sodium maintaining optimum pressure on the arteries.
You can replace processed foods with fresh, whole foods like tomatoes, potatoes, leafy green vegetables, melons, avocados, tuna, salmon, nuts and seeds, etc.
Lower Your Caffeine Intake
Regular intake of caffeine does not affect the blood pressure of a person. Your blood pressure boosts instantly if you are someone who does not drink tea or coffee on a regular basis.
According to PubMed Central, caffeine may have a stronger impact on people who do not consume caffeine regularly. So, you must cut down on caffeine if you are caffeine-sensitive.
Try to Reduce Stress
If a person who suffers from chronic stress, their body is under fight or flight mode, constantly constricting the blood vessels with a faster heart rate. Stress is the key to your high blood pressure and you may drink alcohol or eat unhealthily under stressful situations.
Therefore, try to be aware of your mood, triggers and work on them before they affect you physically. Mediation, music, less work, a walk in the nature can be effective.
Eat Dark Chocolate
According to the American Journal of Nutrition, dark chocolate or cocoa helps in dilating the blood vessels and is linked with lower blood pressure and healthier heart due to the presence of flavonoids.
You can add non-alkanised cocoa powder or sugar free dark chocolate in your diet for effective results.
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