The holiday season is here! The days are filled with hustle and bustle to get organized, presents purchased, house cleaned, food prepped, attend social gatherings and orchestrate who will host dinner on Christmas Day.
You might not feel your blood pressure rising during all of the hustle and bustle — but that doesn’t mean it isn’t. High blood pressure, hypertension and cardiovascular disease are notoriously referred to as ‘the silent killers’, for a good reason!
Consider Natural Therapies
Hypertension is thought to affect more than 1 in 5 Canadians which means many people are likely on prescription blood pressure medication.
Sometimes, blood pressure is well controlled on these medications, other times individuals may experience side effects from long-term usage and need extra support at a cellular level to prevent further hypertension from occurring and arterial damage down the road.
Here are the top 5 natural therapies to lower blood pressure:
An important mineral to supplement with if you have chronic high blood pressure as it can help relax the blood vessels. Many individuals are magnesium deficient and prescription medication can further deplete mineral absorption. Magnesium is required for over 800 biochemical reactions necessary to keep systems of the body functioning properly. Maybe most notably magnesium is involved in the function of the sodium-potassium pump that regulates the concentration of minerals inside and outside of our cells.
Magnesium Cardio was specifically formulated to help with proper cardiovascular function.
Water is vital for any living organism, yet, so underutilized as a therapy for health concerns. It is one of the most cost-effective natural therapies to help almost all of your physiological systems function optimally.
Dehydration can cause the release of a hormone called vasopressin which is telling the body to release more water but this hormone will constrict the blood vessels thus increasing blood pressure.
Coenzyme Q10 is a vitamin-like component that is important for energy production in each cell’s mitochondria, which functions like the cell’s own engine. CoQ10 is found in organs that have large energy needs like the heart — so a deficiency in CoQ10 is going to affect those systems first.
Statin drugs (cholesterol-lowering medications) can inhibit CoQ10 to work properly and after the age of thirty, your body is less able to metabolize CoQ10 on its own.
Supplementing with Ubiquinol — the active form of CoQ10 is superior for its absorption ability and therapeutic benefits for cardiovascular health. It may help the fight to reduce chronic high blood pressure levels and prevent further disease.
4. Exercise, Meditation and Relaxation Methods
Similar to water, exercise, meditation or other relaxation methods can sometimes be underutilized but extremely effective therapies to help lower your blood pressure.
As these activities help to stimulate the parasympathetic nervous system which dilates the blood vessels to release heat, slows heart rate down and induce that ‘rest and digest’ state that allows our bodies to switch into a restful and calm mode.
There are certain foods that you can incorporate daily to give your body the nutrients that help specifically with lowering high blood pressure. The plate is a great place to start when implementing preventative measures in your own healthcare routine.
- 3 celery stalks and avocados provide: fiber, magnesium and potassium
½ cup of beet juice; inorganic nitrates release nitric oxide which allows for the blood vessels to relax
½ cup of pomegranate juice: contains natural ACE (Angiotensin Converting Enzymes) inhibiting properties that allow the blood vessels to relax and ACE inhibitors are a class of pharmaceutical drugs to lower blood pressure
½ tsp of turmeric powder: a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent that reduces the platelets sticking together in the blood
2 tbsp of raw olive oil (not cooked or heated): potent antioxidants that are protective of your LDL cholesterol levels and reduces plaque buildup that can cause narrowing of the blood vessels and subsequently raise blood pressure
¼ cup of almonds or walnuts: a source magnesium, fiber and healthy fats — that moderates your cholesterol levels and reduces plaque build-up in blood vessels
23-30 g (1 small square) of unsweetened 70% or more dark chocolate: provides flavonoids that dilate blood vessels and helps to moderate healthy LDL and HDL cholesterol levels
½ raw onion or 1- 4 cloves of raw cloves of garlic: contains the flavonol quercetin that acts as a natural anti hypertensive
6 prunes or 1 avocado: contains potassium which helps to control the negative effect of too much salt in your body
Be sure to always check with your healthcare practitioner about your health concerns and goals and before starting new natural therapies!