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High blood pressure (also known as hypertension) increases your risk of heart disease, heart attack, blood vessel disease and stroke. Hypertension can be caused by many different factors as discussed in this article so it’s important to understand what your causes are or may be. Today though, we’re going to discuss five different ways that you can lower your blood pressure and give your heart a break.

High blood pressure means that the heart needs to work harder to pump the same amount of blood to the body. This is why heart attack, heart disease and other cardiovascular related risk factors increase with high blood pressure.

High blood pressure is something you may be able to feel. Your heart pumps harder, faster, you may even be able to see your heart pump hard enough to see it move your chest. Having high blood pressure alone can cause you to feel stressed and overwhelmed. Heart disease is the number one killer in America, above cancer even. It’s something that you need to take care of. The heart does a lot of work and needs a beat to keep you alive. With that being said, there are healthy lifestyle changes that you can make in order to effectively lower your blood pressure.

Just because you have high blood pressure (hypertension) does not mean that you need to have high blood pressure. Everyday day dietary and lifestyle choices are at your fingertips and it’s your responsibility to ensure that you’re healthy and your blood pressure is where it needs to be. No one can do this for you but you, and you need to care about yourself enough to make better choices each and every day.

  1. Less Salt:

    A diet rich in processed salt (sodium) is one of the top causes of high blood pressure. If you have a lot of salt in your diet then stop adding it to food, completely disregard salt for a while. Another important change you can make is to switch to a salt that is lower in sodium or has a better sodium ration as compared to other minerals in the salt. You can use celtic sea salt or himalayan salt as better replacements compared to regular white table salt. These are less risky forms of salt when it comes to blood pressure and overall health.

  2. More Minerals:

    Minerals are essential to maintaining a healthy heart rhythm as well as normal blood pressure levels. If you’re deficient in key specific minerals such as potassium, magnesium or calcium are the most important nutrients for heart health and maintaining healthy blood pressure levels. I recommend taking a magnesium supplement known as natural calm to increase your magnesium levels. Typically potassium and magnesium are the most important minerals to consume because over-calcification in the arteries can actually increase blood pressure. So too much calcium can be a risk also.

  3. Less Stress:

    There’s no doubt that stress is a cause in high blood pressure. Busy lives, stress from work, stress from financial hard times, stress from relationships or stress from anywhere else can and will increase stress hormones which elevate blood pressure levels and stress the heart. Do your best to avoid stressful situations or people. If you do have a stressful day spend some time destressing at the end of the day utilizing things like essential oils, journaling, a hot (or cold) bath, or a cold (or hot) shower. Spend time in nature, exercise to move your body and reduce stress hormones.

  4. More Leafy Greens:

    Leafy greens are great for heart health. The best leafy greens that you want to include in your diet are the ones that are rich sources of potassium. These greens are romaine lettuce, kale, arugula, collard greens, turnip greens, and last but not least… spinach. Include these greens in your diet on a daily basis. Make a salad a day and include one or a few of these greens as the base. This is great for heart health, blood pressure as well as circulation throughout the entire body.

  5. More Berries And Fruit:

    Berries are a great sources of flavonoids which are important plant compounds considered an antioxidant. Antioxidants work to deal with oxidative stress in the body. You’re in luck! blueberries are one of the best sources of flavonoids. Am I the only one that thinks blueberries are one of the best snacks in the world? One study has found that consuming flavonoids help to prevent hypertension, and possibly help to reduce high blood pressure as well. Blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, pears, oranges and bananas are great sources of flavonoid based antioxidants.

These are five of the best things you can do on a daily basis to reduce your blood pressure and to keep your heart healthy and at ease. Additionally you can integrate humor, yes, humor as in laughter into your life. Laughter is heart healthy and helps to improve blood flow to and from the heart. Laughing improves the health of blood vessels by causing the endothelium (the lining of the blood vessels) to increase, therefore increasing blood flow.

Exercise is also another beneficial element for reducing stress and benefiting blood pressure. Exercise, even something as simple as walking is very beneficial for the heart. In fact, walking is one of the best regulatory exercises for heart health. Unfortunately in today’s world we sit all too often and do not move enough. We should at least walk a few miles a day, this is normal for heart health and regulatory function. Getting your heart rate up by biking, running, swimming or playing a sport is beneficial as well. keep your diet healthy, and take care of your heart!