10 Ways To Lower Your Blood Pressure

10 Ways To Lower Your Blood Pressure

High blood pressure was estimated to have affected over 75 million Americans in 2016.  Recently the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology revisited the guidelines defining hypertension, making this 75 million a serious underestimation of the number of Americans living with high blood pressure.

High blood pressure boosts the risks of some of the leading killers in the United States such as heart attack, stroke, aneurysms, cognitive decline, and kidney failure.  Not to mention, many of the signs and symptoms of hypertension are undetectable.  Understanding where your blood pressure currently sits is an extremely important factor in managing your health.  It’s even estimated by the American Heart Association that 28% of Americans have high blood pressure and don’t know it.  If you’re unaware of where your blood pressure sits, see a doctor.

While there are different medications that help lower blood pressure (I talk about those more here), some medications can have unwanted side effects such as leg cramps, dizziness, and insomnia.  Fortunately, most people can naturally bring their blood pressure down through various lifestyle changes.  Try these strategies to naturally lower your blood pressure.

1. Start Resistance Training. 

Resistance training, or weight training, has been shown to naturally reduce blood pressure in normotensive, pre, and hypertensive adults. In a meta-analysis conducted by the Journal of Hypertension, an average reduction of 3.9 mm HG was found through the use of Resistance Training (4). While 3-4 mm HG reductions may not seem to be a lot, a 3-5 mm HG reduction has been estimated to reduce the risk for Coronary Artery Disease by 5-9% and Stroke by 8-14%!! (15)

2. Increase Your Everyday Physical Activity. 

Increasing your physical activity throughout the day can have great effects on increasing your blood flow. With a minimum of 30 minutes per day (2% of total day), you may begin to see the benefits of lowering your blood pressure (12). If you want to get started, try my 30 Minute Fat Loss Program which is 30 Days of Pre-Planned Exercise perfect for beginniers. Also designed specifically for those with hypertension. Click here to learn more.

3. Eat Whole, Unprocessed Foods. 

Diets high in processed foods (cereals, bread, cheese, snacks, etc.) are typically extremely high in sodium. Adjusting your nutritional approach to whole, un-processed foods can reduce your sodium intake while increasing other important nutrients like potassium, and magnesium, as well as foods high in fiber which can have meaningful impact on lowering your blood pressure (8).

4. Learn To Relax. 

Just chill! Learning to relax by practicing mindfulness and relaxation techniques (i.e. meditation, deep breathing, progressive relaxation, etc.) will not only help calm the mind, but can improve sleep, cortisol, and hormonal levels that are important for keeping blood pressure in-line.  Techniques like Transcendental Meditation, as well as Breathing Control, have shown to significantly reduce blood pressure (1,6).

5. Sleep Better. 

Sleep doesn’t just feel good; it can be great for helping decrease blood pressure.  In fact, a poor night’s sleep (~3.6 hours) has been shown to significantly increase Blood Pressure compared to a day after a normal night’s worth of rest (16).  Creating a nightly routine, which involves a pre-set bedtime, a limit of blue light and screen time, and avoiding excessive stimulants can have an enormous benefit on your sleep.

6. Cycle Your Caffeine. 

Caffeine’s is one of the most researched performance enhancement supplements known to man. It also happens to be the nation’s most abused psychoactive drug.  While beneficial in many ways, caffeine can acutely and chronically increase blood pressure in normo and hypertensive subjects (7,13). Try cycling off caffeine for one week to one month to give your Central Nervous System a short break to avoid developing caffeine tolerance.

7. Pick Up Your Cardio. 

Improving cardiorespiratory training, or “cardio,” can significantly improve your blood pressure. Hundreds, if not thousands, of studies have demonstrated the benefit of cardio on the hearts ability to significantly lower blood pressure (19).  Looking for cardio workouts that you can do at any time of the day with no equipment necessary? Join the 30-Day Fitness Challenge and join hundreds of other beginners who are taking control of their health today!

8. Limit Alcohol Consumption. 

Everyone is familiar with the benefits of a glass of red wine per night and its effects on health.  But too much alcohol has a negative impact on blood pressure. Research indicates that decreasing alcohol intake anywhere from 16-100{701c11cac7be6d61abaf444fd481f42ea4c254e55be37c4d5a98630b0d5e7ced} can have a significant improvement on blood pressure (21).  If drinking socially, I recommend keeping the number of drinks from 1-2 drinks per outting.

9. Eat Dark Cocoa. 

High levels of flavanols, procanidins and epichatechins in cocoa extract make it an exceptional choice for helping to naturally reduce Hypertension. These compounds may assist by increasing insulin sensitivity as well as reducing blood pressure (5).  Eating about 26-40g (around 1 serving size or ~200 kcal) of dark chocolate with at least 75% cocoa is a great way to assist in decreasing blood pressure. Be sure to look at the content of the dark chocolate, because milk chocolate, white chocolate, and low-content dark chocolate candy bars may actually do more harm than good!

10. Take A Fish Oil Supplement. 

Increasing your Omega 3 intake has been well researched for improving cardiovascular health as well as blood pressure (2,10,14).  I recommend supplementing with 2-3 grams of quality Omega 3’s per day. Quality fish oil supplementation can be used to help lower blood pressure, increase insulin sensitivity, as well as increase cognitive function.  Below are some of the best Fish Oil supplements you can take to increase Omega 3 consumption:

1. VivaNaturals Triple Strength Omega-3 Fish Oil

2. Ocean Blue Professional Omega-3

3. OmegaVia Fish Oil

*Note: I do not have any financial affiliations with these companies, nor do I make any money if you buy their supplements. These are recommendations I make based solely on the quality of the supplements, as they are efficaciously dosed and have been third-party tested.


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