5 simple steps to lower your blood pressure
Have you recently been diagnosed with high blood pressure? Whether your blood pressure is significantly above the normal level or in the prehypertension range, a higher-than-normal reading doesn’t need to get you down.
In fact, being diagnosed with high blood pressure or prehypertension presents an excellent opportunity to change your life for the better. With the right approach, a diagnosis that your blood pressure is high can be what it takes to create change.
Would you like to lower your blood pressure and take control of your health, once and for all? The five-step process in this guide will help you get 100% in control of your body and lower your blood pressure for better health and a better life.
Speak to your doctor about medication
After being diagnosed with prehypertension or high blood pressure, your first step should be speaking to your doctor about medication. A wide variety of medications are available to treat high blood pressure, many of which can help you.
Although it’s always best to lower your blood pressure through a healthier diet and lifestyle, medication can be hugely helpful. Ask your doctor about the best drugs for treating high blood pressure to learn how they could help you improve your health.
Focus on changing one bad habit at a time
High blood pressure is caused by a number of factors, ranging from your age, weight and ethnicity to your diet and activity level. While certain factors – your ethnicity or age, for example – can’t be changed, you can easily take control of others.
It’s very difficult to transform your life and end several bad habits overnight. Instead of quitting smoking, eating better and exercising more right away, focus on changing one bad habit at a time.
For example, you might decide to start with exercise. Commit to walking around the neighbourhood or through your local park for an hour every morning and stick with it until it’s a habit. Once it’s a habit, move on to fixing your next bad habit.
By conquering your bad habits one at a time, you’ll never feel overwhelmed. Stick to your plan and try to eliminate an unhealthy habit – whether it’s a high-sodium diet, cigarette smoking or lack of exercise – every two months.
Commit to becoming a more active person
Your activity level is one of the biggest factors determining your blood pressure. If you are currently inactive and rarely exercise, an hour a day of moderate-intensity exercise is all it takes to lower your blood pressure by a significant amount.
Use the one-at-a-time strategy above to commit to becoming a more active, healthy person. Start by setting a goal of walking for an hour every morning. Once you can walk for an hour easily, start jogging to further increase your hearth health.
If your blood pressure is very high, you’ll need to speak to your doctor before you start an exercise routine. Taking the first step to becoming a more active person is far from easy, but the health and wellbeing rewards are certainly worth it.
Learn to enjoy the taste of natural foods
One of the biggest causes of high blood pressure is sodium consumption. Diets that are high in sodium – particularly those with lots of fast food and processed snacks – can contribute to prehypertension and high blood pressure.
Many people, after becoming accustomed to a diet that’s high in sodium, find other food bland and tasteless. By committing to a low-sodium, diet, however, you’ll soon start to discover new tastes in healthy foods that you never previously noticed.
These subtleties are part of the flavour of natural foods, and they’re something that many people who previously ate processed, high-sodium foods missed out on. Even if natural foods are tasteless at first, stick with your diet; you’ll soon start to love it!
Work together with your friends or family
Do any of your friends or family members have high blood pressure? If you and one of your close friends or family members both have high blood pressure, try working as a team to improve your health together.
Having an exercise partner makes walking, jogging or weight training much more of an enjoyable activity. Working with someone else also makes it easier to stick with a new diet; after all, no one wants to let their dieting partner down.
Finding the willpower to change your habits and lower your blood pressure can be very difficult. Find a friend, family member or colleague who faces the same health issues as you and work together to improve both of your lives.