If you’ve got high blood pressure or are concerned about getting there, take a bit of comfort in knowing that blood pressure is not permanent. High blood pressure today can be low in the future if you’re willing to put in some work.
Managing or reducing high blood pressure is not particularly complex. However, it can be challenging. The three essential steps to doing so are quite simple in theory but much harder to execute.
Exercise, a better diet, and good sleep are three things you can do almost immediately that will start to lower blood pressure. Here’s how to get started.
More exercise is all you need. It’s a completely relative term, but it is true. If you are able-bodied and are spending too much time sedentary, create a movement schedule.
Focus on moving for at least five minutes out of every hour during the day in addition to 30 minutes of dedicated exercise time. If you’re unable to go for a 30-minute walk, or dance for half an hour, split it into manageable chunks throughout the day.
Tossing your processed food is another step that can take you closer to lower blood pressure. Refined and processed, aka packaged, food is some of the worst stuff for blood pressure. It is packed with salt, sugar, and fats that make arteries slim and stiff.
Replace those foods with heart-healthy options like fruit, vegetables, whole grains, nuts and seeds, beans, lean protein, and fatty fish.
Several diet styles can help you reduce blood pressure without restricting calories or entire food groups. The Mediterranean and DASH diets are great places to start.
Lastly, you’ll want to take a look at sleep patterns. Poor quality sleep, generally lasting less than six hours per night, is associated with higher blood pressure.
Taking some time to assess your sleeping conditions and pre-sleep routine can help you get on a better path. If that makes no difference, consider booking an appointment at a sleep clinic.
These three factors are not substitutes for prescribed blood pressure treatments. However, they are all proven to reduce blood pressure. Including them in your life may lead to lower blood pressure and no longer needing medicine.