How to prevent and reverse hypertension, the #1 risk factor for death in the world.
1. Walk and exercise regularly
Walking just 30 minutes a day can help lower your blood pressure. More exercise helps reduce it even further.
2. Reduce your sodium intake
Most guidelines for lowering blood pressure recommend lowering sodium intake. However, that recommendation might make the most sense for people who are salt-sensitive.
3. Drink less alcohol
Drinking alcohol in any quantity may raise your blood pressure. Limit your drinking to no more than one drink a day for women, two for men.
4. Eat more potassium-rich foods
Eating fresh fruits and vegetables, which are rich in potassium, can help lower blood pressure.
5. Cut back on caffeine
Caffeine can cause a short-term spike in blood pressure, although for many people it does not cause a lasting increase.
6. Learn to manage stress
Chronic stress can contribute to high blood pressure. Finding ways to manage stress can help.
7. Eat dark chocolate or cocoa
Dark chocolate and cocoa powder contain plant compounds that help relax blood vessels, lowering blood pressure.
8. Lose weight
Losing weight can significantly lower high blood pressure. This effect is even greater when you exercise.
9. Quit smoking
There’s conflicting research about smoking and high blood pressure, but what is clear is that both increase the risk of heart disease.
10. Cut added sugar and refined carbs
Refined carbs, especially sugar, may raise blood pressure. Some studies have shown that low-carb diets may help reduce your levels.
11. Eat berries
Berries are rich in polyphenols, which can help lower blood pressure and the overall risk of heart disease.
12. Try meditation or deep breathing
Both meditation and deep breathing can activate the parasympathetic nervous system, which helps slow your heart rate and lower blood pressure.
13. Eat calcium-rich foods
Calcium-rich diets are linked to healthy blood pressure levels. Get calcium through dark leafy greens and tofu, as well as dairy.
14. Take natural supplements
Several natural supplements have been investigated for their ability to lower blood pressure.
15. Eat foods rich in magnesium
Magnesium is an important mineral that helps regulate blood pressure. Find it in whole foods, such as legumes and whole grains.
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