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6 Natural Ways to Lower High Blood Pressure

taking blood pressure

Millions of people take medication for high blood pressure, and that is unlikely to change despite new guidelines that slightly relax hypertension standards for older Americans.

One of the nation’s top cardiologists says that having high blood pressure does not mean you have to stay on hypertension drugs for life. There are natural ways to lower blood pressure, says Chauncey Crandall, M.D., that allow many people to stop taking side effect-causing medications.

“One in every three Americans has high blood pressure,” says Dr. Crandall. This means they are at greater risk to suffer a heart attack, have a stroke, or develop heart failure.”

Dr. Crandall, author of the No. 1 Amazon bestseller “The Simple Heart Cure,” says he is familiar with this problem because his own blood pressure was elevated.

“My readings were normal or only slightly elevated during my checkups. I had reason to suspect, though, that during my stressful workdays my blood pressure was anything but normal. Still, I let my hypertension go for years without treatment. I never took my blood pressure seriously until I found myself in the hospital at serious risk of having a heart attack,” says Dr. Crandall, director of preventative medicine at the Palm Beach Cardiovascular Clinic.

The new guidelines, which were released recently, stipulate that healthy blood pressure readings for people ages 30 to 59 should be under 140/90 and under 150/90 before drugs are considered.

“Some people do have to take medication to reduce their blood pressure — there’s no way around it. But there are many steps that Americans can take to reduce their need for or even eliminate these drugs,” he says.

Dr. Matthew Budoff, a top cardiologist and UCLAresearcher, agrees. “With the new prevention guidelines for blood pressure and cholesterol, it has become increasingly important for individuals to reduce their risk of cardiovascular disease with alternative measures,” he says.

Dr. Budoff recommends aged garlic extract. “This is one of the most effective and scientifically proven ways to lower blood pressure as effectively as medication,” he says. “Aged garlic extract helps relax blood vessels and increases blood flow.”

Here are five additional ways Dr. Crandall recommends for lowering blood pressure naturally:

  1. Take 300-500 milligrams of magnesium daily. Magnesium is an important mineral that helps build strong bones, but it also helps lower blood pressure and can help control irregular heartbeats.
  2. Exercise. Walking one hour a day will help lower blood pressure naturally. If you must, you can divide up the hour but if you do it all at once you will boost the effect and help your body create a collateral blood flow, which brings more blood to the heart.
  3. Lose weight. If you can achieve the ideal weight that you weighed in high school, you may very well eliminate your need for blood pressure medications and drugs to lower cholesterol as well. The loss of 10 pounds generally means the elimination of one high blood pressure drug.
  4. Reduce stress. When you are under stress, your body releases unhealthy hormones, like adrenaline and cortisol, which over time can result in higher blood pressure. Measures that reduce stress, like spending time with friends, attending church, meditating, or even playing with pets, can lower blood pressure.
  5. Sleep an extra hour a night. Research shows that a lack of sleep not only contributes to high blood pressure, but it can make the condition drug resistant, meaning that hypertensive medication won’t work.

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