Tame Your Hypertension: A Guide to 6 Natural Remedies for Lowering High Blood Pressure12 June 2023
- Hypertension (high blood pressure) is a common condition affecting millions worldwide. It is the leading cause of heart attacks and strokes in the UK.
- Treatment for hypertension is often a combination of lifestyle changes, medication and diet. However, many effective natural remedies can help lower your blood pressure naturally.
- Medical cannabis shows promise as a natural way to decrease blood pressure. Cannabinoids have been shown to induce vasodilation and reduce risk factors that lead to hypertension.
- Other natural remedies include magnesium, CoQ10 and cocoa.
- Lifestyle changes such as losing weight, reducing alcohol and smoking, and exercising remain the most effective ways to prevent and manage high blood pressure.
High blood pressure, or hypertension, is a silent yet potentially dangerous health concern affecting millions worldwide. Around one in three people in the UK live with hypertension, with half of the affected population not receiving diagnosis and treatment.
Hypertension can lead to serious health complications such as stroke, heart disease and kidney failure. The good news is that you can control high blood pressure with the right treatment plans.
Conventional medical treatments like medication and lifestyle changes effectively lower high blood pressure. However, many people are exploring natural remedies as complementary options for maintaining optimal blood pressure levels.
In this blog, we’ll delve into herbal remedies, nutritional supplements and holistic practices that can help support a healthy cardiovascular system and potentially aid in the fight against high blood pressure. We’ll also review the scientific literature and clinical research on these methods and summarise the best ways to maintain healthy blood pressure.
Ready to take your first steps towards a holistic blood pressure management plan? Our medical cannabis experts at Lyphe can help you find the best treatment options for your needs. Book a call today to learn more about how medical cannabis can help you manage your blood pressure and reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease!
1. Try medical cannabis
With the potential risks of heart disease and stroke, finding effective ways to manage blood pressure is crucial. Alongside traditional treatments and lifestyle changes, there is growing interest in the potential benefits of medical cannabis for lowering blood pressure.
How medical cannabis may help lower high blood pressure
Medical cannabis contains active compounds called cannabinoids. These cannabinoids act on the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS is a complex network of receptors, enzymes and other proteins found throughout the body. It plays an important role in regulating our immune system, inflammation response, pain sensation and mental health.
A 2018 study published in the British Journal of Pharmacology suggests that the ECS is overactivated in hypertension. The role of cannabinoids, particularly cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), is to help maintain the balance of the ECS and could be a novel therapeutic way of hypertension treatment.
While more research is needed, some studies suggest that cannabinoids may help lower blood pressure by:
- Vasodilation: In a 2017 study published by The American Society for Clinical Investigation, CBD was found to have vasodilatory effects. The cannabinoid causes blood vessels to widen and relax. In turn, this reduces the pressure exerted by the blood on the artery walls.
- Reduced stress and anxiety: High blood pressure can be linked to stress and anxiety. Both THC (low dose) and CBD (high dose) have been shown to have calming and anxiolytic effects (anti-anxiety), which could potentially contribute to lowering blood pressure.
- Reduced oxidative stress: Oxidative stress is a process that contributes to inflammation, ageing and disease, and high blood pressure is associated with oxidative stress. A 2020 review published in the International Journal of Molecular Sciences found that CBD reduced oxidative stress in animal models.
- Anti-inflammatory properties: Inflammation can contribute to high blood pressure, and cannabinoids have been shown to possess anti-inflammatory properties. By reducing inflammation, medical cannabis may help alleviate the strain on the cardiovascular system and lower blood pressure.
- Improved sleep quality: Poor sleep can be a leading factor in hypertension. Both CBD and THC have been reported to improve sleep quality, which in turn may help regulate blood pressure.
Precautions and considerations
It’s essential to remember that medical cannabis is not a substitute for traditional hypertension treatments or lifestyle changes. If you’re considering using medical cannabis to help manage high blood pressure, consult your healthcare professional to discuss the potential benefits, risks and appropriate dosages.
It’s also important that you source your medical cannabis straight from a licensed provider. Going “underground’ can put you at risk of purchasing a product that may not be safe or effective.
As the biggest and most trusted medical cannabis clinic in the UK, Lyphe has been helping patients find relief from a range of conditions, including hypertension. If you’re looking for a safe and effective way to manage your blood pressure, book an appointment with one of our experts today.
2. Eat chocolate or cocoa
Yes, you read that right! Eating chocolate or cocoa can lower blood pressure. But not just any chocolate—dark chocolate with a high percentage of cocoa.
Studies suggest that cocoa flavonoids and polyphenols may help reduce blood pressure by relaxing the blood vessels. Consuming cocoa, particularly in the form of dark chocolate, can also inhibit platelet aggregation and improve blood flow to vital organs. This effect reduces the risk of blood clots in heart disease.
One 2015 study involving 60 participants found that high polyphenol (high cocoa) chocolate improved outcomes in hypertensive patients. The participants of the study consumed 25g of dark chocolate over the course of eight weeks. After the treatment period, the researchers found significant decreases in blood pressure without changes in weight, inflammatory markers and insulin resistance.
While these natural remedies to lower blood pressure may have some potential benefits, it is important to consume them in moderation as they are also high in calories and sugar. Choosing dark chocolate that contains at least 70% cocoa solids is recommended for maximum health benefits.
3. Manage stress
Stress can raise blood pressure. It’s well established that stressful events can lead to adverse cardiovascular reactions, including heart attacks and strokes. Learning to manage stress can make a difference in overall health, and it can potentially lower hypertension.
There are various ways to manage stress as a hypertensive individual. Here are some effective stress management tips to reduce blood pressure naturally:
- Meditation has been shown to improve blood pressure, heart rate and other cardiovascular parameters in hypertensive patients. It’s not just a stress management technique; it can also help you relax and become more calm.
- Yoga is another form of exercise that helps reduce stress levels and lower blood pressure. It can also help you relax and get rid of negative emotions.
- Exercise is another effective way to manage stress. It helps improve both mental and physical health by increasing oxygen flow to the body’s organs and tissues, which in turn reduces blood pressure levels.
- Acupuncture can lower blood pressure levels by reducing stress levels. It’s a traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) practice that involves the insertion of very fine needles into various points of the body to promote healing and pain relief.
4. Lose weight, if possible
Losing weight can be an effective way to manage hypertension. According to the American Heart Association, being overweight puts extra strain on the heart. This increases the risk of developing high blood pressure and damage to blood vessels that can lead to serious health threats.
Weight loss can reduce the strain on the heart – even losing as little as 10 pounds can lower blood pressure. In general, blood pressure might go down by about 1 millimetre of mercury (mm Hg) with each kilogram (about 2.2 pounds) of weight lost. According to a study published in the journal Hypertension, several smaller-scale studies have documented a positive association between weight loss maintained for periods of up to two years and reduced blood pressure.
5. Take herbal remedies or supplements
In addition to lifestyle changes and conventional medical treatments, many people turn to herbal remedies and supplements to help regulate blood pressure. Here are some popular natural alternatives that may be beneficial in managing hypertension:
- Hawthorn (Crataegus spp.) is a plant traditionally used in herbal medicine for heart health. Some studies suggest that hawthorn extract may help lower blood pressure by improving blood flow and reducing arterial stiffness.
- Garlic (Allium sativum) may confer numerous health benefits, including lowering blood pressure. Research indicates that this high bp remedy may help relax blood vessels.
- Olive leaf extract, derived from the leaves of the olive tree (Olea europaea), has been found to have blood pressure-lowering effects. Studies show that its active compound, oleuropein, may help dilate blood vessels and reduce blood pressure.
- Magnesium is an essential mineral that plays a vital role in various bodily functions, including blood pressure regulation. Research has demonstrated that magnesium supplementation can help lower blood pressure in people with hypertension.
- Potassium is another essential mineral that helps balance sodium levels in the body, aiding in blood pressure regulation. Studies have shown that increasing potassium intake can help reduce blood pressure in individuals with hypertension.
- Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) is an antioxidant found to have blood pressure-lowering effects. Research suggests that CoQ10 supplementation may help reduce systolic and diastolic blood pressure in people with hypertension.
- Calcium helps to regulate blood pressure by aiding in the contraction and relaxation of blood vessels. Calcium-rich foods include dairy products, fish and dark leafy greens.
6. Cut down on smoking tobacco and alcohol
Smoking tobacco causes a temporary increase in blood pressure, and long-term smoking can increase the risk of hypertension. It also increases the risk of renovascular, malignant and masked hypertension.
Smoking cessation is the most effective lifestyle for preventing cardiovascular diseases, including hypertension. Individuals who quit smoking for at least one year have been observed to have higher adjusted increments in both systolic and diastolic blood pressure than active smokers.
Similarly, drinking too much alcohol can raise blood pressure. Alcohol affects calcium and cortisol (stress hormone) levels in the body. It also increases the levels of the hormone renin, which causes the blood vessels to constrict.
Renin also decreases how much fluid the body excretes, which can increase blood volume and lead to higher blood pressure. The kidneys also become less effective at removing sodium from the body when alcohol is consumed in excess, which can cause fluid retention and increased blood pressure.
Studies have shown that heavy drinkers who cut back to moderate levels can lower their blood pressure by approximately 5.5 millimetres of mercury (mm Hg) and their diastolic pressure by about 4 mm Hg. Additionally, the American Heart Association recommends no more than two drinks per day for men and no more than one drink per day for women.
Conclusion – Natural cures for high blood pressure
Integrating natural remedies into your hypertension management plan can be a valuable addition to conventional treatments and lifestyle modifications. From natural remedies like medical cannabis and garlic to essential minerals like magnesium and potassium, these approaches may offer a way to support heart health and potentially lower high blood pressure.
However, it’s crucial to remember that these ways to naturally lower blood pressure should not be used as a substitute for prescribed medications. They should also be used under the guidance of healthcare professionals. Ensuring proper dosages and avoiding potential negative interactions are key to safe and successful holistic ways to lower blood pressure.
Medical cannabis may be a key component in managing hypertension. At Lyphe, we believe that a holistic approach to managing blood pressure is the most effective way to improve quality of life. Medical cannabis can be used in conjunction with lifestyle changes, diet and other holistic methods of lowering blood pressure. Book a call today to find out whether medical cannabis is the right fit for your condition!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What will bring high blood pressure down quickly?
Some quick ways to lower high blood pressure include relaxing, taking a hot shower or bath, and breathing exercises. However, it’s important to note that a long-term approach is typically required to maintain low bp levels.
What is the best natural medicine for high blood pressure?
There is no best natural medicine for high blood pressure. Instead, maintaining a healthy blood pressure level involves lifestyle changes and natural remedies that work together to normalise bp.
What herb helps bring down high blood pressure?
Medical cannabis, basil and ginger are some natural ways that show promise in bringing down blood pressure. Using these natural herbal remedies for high blood pressure in conjunction with lifestyle changes can help you get your blood pressure under control.
How can I lower my blood pressure without medication?
You can lower your blood pressure without medication by making positive lifestyle changes, such as reducing sodium intake and exercising more. If these measures aren’t enough to lower your blood pressure to a healthy level, adding natural herbs that help with high blood pressure may be helpful.
What vitamins lower blood pressure?
Studies suggest that certain vitamins and minerals may help lower blood pressure, including magnesium, vitamin D and potassium. Foods high in vitamin C, E, selenium or L-arginine may also help stabilise bp.
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