I think it’s obvious that finding ways to lower blood pressure naturally is the ideal method. It sure beats medications and having to cope with potential side effects. I’ve been lucky enough to avoid medications and have used various different methods to lower blood pressure.
In addition, I’m fortunate to have access to different physicians and nutritionists at my job. They help guide me along and teach me the most effective methods to keep my blood pressure at acceptable levels. I’ve made many of these methods a way of life and they’ve become daily habits.
Then there are times when life throws you a curve ball, a stressful day or event. All of a sudden those daily rituals to lower blood pressure don’t seem to matter. I have ways to naturally lower blood pressure under these situations also. The best part is they work and doesn’t involve taking a pill. The following post is going to tell you all the ways in complete detail, so you’ll be armed with the best natural methods.
BP Tip: You can lower BP naturally by changing how you breathe. There’s a device approved by the FDA and The American Heart Association. It guides your breathing a few minutes a day which has been proven to lower BP. You can check it out in the manufacturer’s website by clicking here.
Ways To Lower Blood Pressure Naturally
The following is a list of 25 ways to lower blood pressure naturally. There’s no medication or supplements found in the list. I’ve found similar articles or videos that included supplements in their natural list which made me feel slighted. Everything found here can be done through nutrition, beverages or by yourself at home.
1. Calming Drinks
I’ve said it many times, consuming drinks to lower blood pressure is my favorite way. It’s super easy and most of the time doesn’t involve preparation. The following drinks have been proven to lower blood pressure and taste great. Knowing I’m drinking something healthy that benefit my BP gives me an instant calming affect. Here are 3 of my favorites.
Hibiscus Tea: I found 2 different studies that shows how Hibiscus Tea lowers blood pressure. The first one was published in 2010 (resource) by the Journal Of Nutrition. They found blood pressure was lowered as soon as people started to drink the tea. The 2nd study (resource) in the Journal Hypertension found that diastolic and systolic blood pressure numbers were lowered after consuming Hibiscus Tea.
This amazing tea is a herbal tea that can be served cold or hot. It has a tart, cranberry flavor that tastes delicious, especially cold. You can find it in most supermarkets or online in websites like Amazon.
Pomegranate Juice: This juice is great for lowering blood pressure because it contains a lot of potassium and has 3 times the antioxidants than green tea or red wine. A study (resource) released in 2017 found that no matter how long the participants drank pomegranate juice, their systolic blood pressure was lowered. The juice is made from the fruit, pomegranate and can be found almost anywhere.
Red Wine: For those who like to indulge in some alcohol, this is the best choice for lowering blood pressure and heart health. Just don’t drink the whole bottle by yourself ;). There has been so many studies (resource) that proves how red wine can lower blood pressure, increase good cholesterol and reduce plaque in your arteries. So next time you want to have a glass of red wine in front of the fireplace, at dinner or while chatting with a friend, there’s no need to feel guilty.
I wrote a blog post in this same website that tells you 10 drinks to lower blood pressure backed by science. You can check out that post by clicking right here.
2. Pressure Points
The best part of the pressure points that I use, is I can use them anytime or anywhere I am, even at work. They are great for stimulating the nerves, connective tissues and tiny muscles in various parts of your body (resource). When this is done, it is an effective way to relax your body and mind. Some of the pressure points, like the one I tell you about are associated with stress relief. Stress relief is an effective way to lower blood pressure and keep your stress hormones low.
3rd Eye Point: The 3rd eye point is located in the middle of your forehead where it meets the bridge of your nose. The following is how to stimulate this pressure point.
- Using your forefinger or thumb, press the point gently for one minute.
- During the 1 minute, take deep, slow breaths to help relax your body even more.
- After the minute is over, take a short break and repeat until your mind and body feels calm.
3. Breathing Exercises
Have you ever noticed that when you get stressed your breathing becomes fast, erratic or heavy? It’s not a pleasant feeling and can make your stress even worse. You may have heard the saying “take a deep breath,” but it’s a saying for a good reason. My favorite breathing exercise, called deep breathing, can help prevent air from getting trapped in your lungs. You’ll be able to take in more fresh air and feel calmer (resource). The following is how to practice deep breathing.
- You can sit or stand with your shoulders and elbows slightly back. This position allows your chest to expand more while breathing in.
- Using your nose if possible, inhale slowly and deeply while counting to 5 seconds.
- Then immediately breath out slowly through your nose for the same 5 second count.
- Keep repeating this 5 second breathing in and out for about one minute until you can feel your body and breathing more relaxed and at ease.
Check out my blog post with 9 different ways to perform breathing exercises, Breathing Exercises To Lower Blood Pressure Naturally.
There’s nothing better than a nice relaxing massage to help calm your body. The self-massages that I perform, can be done at work or home and by yourself. So there’s no need to drive somewhere and spend money. A massage is one of the best ways to relief daily stress. It will stimulate your muscles, nerves and improve blood circulation (resource). My favorite self-massage involves the face, particularly the forehead and temples. In addition, I find it one of the easier ones to give to yourself. Here’s how to perform my self face massage.
- Using your thumbs make a series of tiny circles paying special attention to your temples, forehead and jaw joint area.
- After that switch over to your middle fingers and massage the bridge of your nose and slowly move outward over your eyebrows toward your temples.
- Keep it up for a few minutes until you feel more relaxed and calm.
Meditation like massage will help you relax and relief some stress. Stress hormones, like cortisol, will increase your blood pressure. Stress can lead to bad habits like excess alcohol and a bad diet. These things will make your blood pressure worse. Therefore, the more you can relax the better and meditation is one of the ways to accomplish it (resource). Meditation takes some practice to get right. The following are beginner tips on how to meditate.
Prepare For Meditation
- Find a distraction free area.
- Consider using scented candles, incense or flowers to enhance your experience.
- Get a meditation cushion, old pillow or sofa cushion so you can sit comfortably.
- Wear comfortable clothing that’s loose and not restrictive or tight.
- Determine how long you want to meditate for and set a timer when starting so you don’t have to be distracted checking on the time once you start.
Start Your Meditation
- Sit on your cushion with your back straight, position your legs and arms any comfortable way.
- Tilt your chin down which helps you ease your breathing.
- Keep your mouth closed, jaw relaxed and inhale and exhale through your nose.
- Focus on your breathing and nothing else. By doing this all other thoughts from the outside world can stay away on their own.
- If your thoughts begin to wander, bring your attention back to your breathing and nothing else. You can try counting your breaths to focus your attention.
- Don’t be hard on yourself. It’s hard to focus in the beginning, but you’ll get better over time.
- In the beginning attempt shorter sessions and eventually try longer ones as you improve.
6. Warm Healing Baths
Like a massage, a nice warm bath after a long day is like paradise. More and more is being written about passive heating, like a warm bath, reducing blood sugar, heart attack risk and even lowering blood pressure. In addition, a warm bath can keep the stress levels down which will lower blood pressure (resource). Here are 3 great warming baths that I absolutely love.
Magnesium Epsom Salt: Grandmothers have raved about this for years. The combination of epsom salt and magnesium can do wonders for your body. The magnesium can relax the body and the epsom salt reduces muscle aches caused by stress.
Lavender Oil: Lavender oil smells great and has anti-anxiety effects.
Chamomile Tea: Add chamomile tea to your bath. Steep it ahead of time and then pour it into the bath water. Chamomile calms the body and is the perfect natural way to lower blood pressure.
7. Consume Magnesium To Lower Blood Pressure
Magnesium can help lower your blood pressure because it can relax your arteries (resource). This prevents them from restricting which raises your blood pressure. Magnesium also helps to relax your muscles and body which keeps you more calm and helps out at bedtime. In addition, it also regulates minerals like potassium and calcium that are important to controlling your blood pressure. Check out my in depth blog post that I wrote in this same website about lowering BP with magnesium right here. The following are 5 foods high in magnesium:
- Swiss Chard
- Dark Chocolate
- Pumpkin Seeds
8. Potassium To Lower Blood Pressure
There are a few ways potassium can help lower blood pressure. I wrote a detailed blog post on the exact topic which also tells you the symptoms of low potassium levels. You can check out that blog post in this same website right here. Like magnesium, potassium can help relax blood vessels which keeps BP lower. An article posted in Harvard Health (resource) shows a number of studies that show an association with high blood pressure and low potassium levels.
Another way that potassium helps to naturally lower blood pressure is the 4:1 potassium/sodium ratio. By taking in about 4,700mg of potassium and 1,250-1500mg of sodium helps the kidneys control the amount of fluid in your body. If this ratio is out of balance, it’s possible for the body to store extra fluids which can raise blood pressure. The extra fluid will make your heart work harder and increases the pressure on your blood vessels. The best way to increase potassium is through these potassium high foods:
- Swiss Chard
- Acorn Squash
- Lima Beans
- Dried Apricots
- Sweet Potato
9. Physical Activity
Regular exercise can help lower your blood pressure in a few ways. Physical activity strengthens your heart. A stronger heart works easier which puts less pressure on your arteries. In addition, exercise will help control your weight which helps to lower blood pressure.
You don’t have to run marathons for exercise to be effective. Strive for about 20 minutes of physical activity everyday. Always check with a doctor first before starting an exercise program. If you don’t have health insurance or you’re looking to change your plan, you can check out the best affordable plans right for you. I wrote a blog post on it right here. The following are a few ways to get physical activity accomplished (resource):
- Walking Stairs
- Regular Walks
- Playing Sports
- Weight Lifting Machines
- Free Weights
- Bicycle Riding
I recently wrote a blog post you may want to check out, it’s called 11 Easy exercises To Lower Blood Pressure.
10. Improve Sleep
Are you tossing and turning all night? It’s definitely torture when that happens. It always seems that when you finally drift off into a deep sleep, it’s time to wake up. Whatever your reason for lack of sleep, it can raise those stress hormones during the day. If you’re not getting enough sleep because of late bedtimes, schedule more sleep time into your daily routine. If it’s sleep problems that’s causing your lack of sleep, then follow these 5 tips:
- Avoid all electronics before bedtime. This includes your phone. Screen time stimulates brain activity and can affect your sleep quality.
- You can get better sleep quality when sleeping in a cooler room. The National Sleep Foundation recommends a bedroom temperature between 60 to 67 degrees.
- Even on your days off, aim for a steady sleep schedule. Try to go to sleep and wake up the same times every day. A steady routine enhances your sleep time.
- If your room has light coming in, it can affect your sleep. Keep your room as dark as possible by getting light filtering blinds, shades or drapes.
- Keep your room as quiet as possible. Consider using a sound machine to help drown out noise that can’t be avoided.
11. Simplify Your Schedule
Having a busy schedule, rushing around, running late for work, driving fast are all things that people do when they are busy. These activities raise your stress levels. Chronic stress will raise your blood pressure levels and over time will cause damage to your arteries (resource). Therefore, if you want to reduce your mental burden, be more productive and have less stress, practice the following tips.
- Prepare for the next day prior to going to sleep the night before. Prepare your lunch, set out your clothes or make a list of things you need to do the next morning. I just bought a coffee maker where I can set up the coffee to make itself automatically. A simpler morning can save your sanity.
- Do less and only schedule the activities in your day that are important. If you don’t have extra time, don’t do things that can wait.
- Have a list of everything you need to do for the day. As you complete each task, check it off.
- Make time to rest every day. Even on a busy day, work in some time to unwind. Use this free time to perform some of the relaxation techniques in this blog post like pressure points, self-massage or a calming hibiscus tea.
12. Recognize & Avoid Stress Triggers
Take a time out and write down things that are causing you stress. If its traffic then discover a different route, leave a different time or take alternative transportation. Avoid people that are stressing you out when possible. There was someone at the gym that I didn’t like being around. What did I do? I changed the time I went to the gym and avoided that person. Doing things like this will make your life less stressful.
How does laughter help? It tricks your nervous system into making your mood happier. Laughter releases endorphins that decreases stress hormones like cortisol and adrenaline. Pick your favorite comedian and watch a few of their videos. One of my favorites is Rodney Dangerfield.
14. Avoid Bad Habits
The following bad habits can raise blood pressure and lead to other habits that are bad for your health (resource).
Excess Alcohol: Abusing alcohol can lead to high blood pressure and other health issues like heart attack, strokes and obesity.
Smoking and Tobacco: While long-term effects of smoking are unproven to affect blood pressure, short term smoking does. Smoking causes temporary spikes in blood pressure which can affect the health of your arteries over time.
Illegal Drugs: Many illegal drugs can increase heart beat, make your heart work harder and increase blood pressure.
15. Avoid Foods Bad For Blood Pressure
Many foods have added sugar, excess sodium and unhealthy fats (resource). The following are foods to avoid to lower blood pressure.
Deli and Processed Meats: These foods are loaded with sodium and are associated with many diseases including high blood pressure and heart disease.
Fried Foods: Fried foods taste amazing but are high in trans fat and calories. In addition, they are dipped in flour and batter prior to frying.
Fatty Meats: Foods like pork, bacon, sausages and lamb contain saturated and trans fats. These foods can raise your cholesterol and cause obesity.
Foods High In Sugar: Sugar can make you gain weight, raise blood sugar and insulin levels. This can cause an increase in blood pressure and heart rate by activating the sympathetic nervous system.
Processed Foods: They are foods made from refined ingredients, artificial substances and have been chemically processed. They can make it difficult to lower blood pressure because they are high in sugar, trans fats and low in nutrients that are beneficial for blood pressure.
16. Eat Foods That Lower Blood Pressure
The following foods are low in saturated fats, added sugars, excess sodium and have heart healthy benefits.
- Wild caught fish and chicken without the skin
- Vegetables like asparagus, spinach, sweet potatoes and broccoli.
- Whole grains like brown rice and oatmeal.
- Low sodium nuts like cashews and almonds.
17. Control Your Weight
There are numerous studies (resource) showing a direct relationship with weight gain and increased blood pressure. Losing excess body fat is one of the most effective ways to lower blood pressure naturally. Some of the best ways to lose weight are shown right in this article.
- Regular Physical Activity
- Eat Foods That Lower Blood Pressure
- Avoid Foods Bad For Blood Pressure
18. Other Drinks To Lower Blood Pressure Naturally
In #1 of this blog post, I listed 3 calming drinks that benefit your blood pressure. Here are 3 more additional drinks that are backed by science to lower blood pressure. Check out my blog post that lists 10 drinks, backed by science, to lower blood pressure by clicking right here.
Watermelon Juice: Biting into a watermelon is so refreshing. I find it almost additive, and it’s hard to stop eating once I get going. When I found this study (resource) in the Journal of Hypertension, I was excited because they showed that supplementation with watermelon extract lowered blood pressure in obese middle aged adults.
Beet Juice: Beets are great for lowering blood pressure because they contain nitrate, potassium and folate. All of these are beneficial for blood pressure. This study published in the Journal Nutrition (resource) found that those who supplemented with beetroot juice lowered their systolic blood pressure significantly.
Low-Fat Milk: The low-fat version is better than the regular because full fat dairy contains palmitic acid which blocks signals to relax blood vessels. Low-fat milk contains calcium, phosphorus and potassium which are all beneficial in lowering blood pressure. This study (resource) in the British Journal of Nutrition, found that switching from full fat dairy to low-fat helped lower BP.
19. Avoid These Drinks
Excess Alcohol: If you are trying to lower blood pressure excess alcohol must be avoided. Besides raising blood pressure, it can lead to heart failure, irregular heartbeat and stroke. Don’t drink more than 2 drinks a day for men and 1 drink a day for women. The following are guidelines for what is considered 1 drink:
- 4 ounces of wine
- 12 ounce beer
- 1.5 ounces of 80-proof spirits
- 1 ounce of 100-proof spirits
Sugary Drinks: There’s plenty of evidence that excess sugar can raise your blood sugar and insulin levels. This can lead to an increase in your heart beat and BP. A study (resource) showed an increase in systolic and diastolic BP with a diet high in sugar. This is more than what is seen with higher sodium. Avoid these 10 high sugar drinks:
- Fruit juices with added sugars
- Regular soda
- Packaged hot cocoa
- Sweetened ice tea
- Coffee with sugar
- Energy drinks
- Sport drinks
- Alcohol drinks made with bottled mixers
- Some flavored waters
- Powdered Lemonade
20. Control Sodium Intake
The American Heart Association recommends no more than 2,300mg of sodium a day with an ideal limit of 1,500mg per day (resource). This is true especially for those that are trying to lower their blood pressure. If you are working in a job or doing an activity that makes you sweat all day long then this recommendation is probably not for you. We need sodium intake, but the problem is most take in way too much. While we need more potassium than sodium for the kidneys to function properly, some have it reversed. Avoid processed foods, table salt and even some drugs and medications.
21. Improve The Mood
By creating a more calm, relaxed atmosphere, especially at home, can help keep you calm and reduce stress. Try implementing the following tactics for a more calm lifestyle.
- Listen to soothing music: Research (resource) has shown soothing music is an effective way to complement your therapies to lower blood pressure.
- Scented candles
- Lighten up your rooms with sunlight
- Decorate with fresh flowers
22. Schedule Activities You Enjoy
Too many of our days are filled with work and chores. It’s essential to schedule some time to do activities that you enjoy. This will help break the stress, make you happier and make you feel more relaxed. I find myself putting things off I enjoy to get other things accomplished that don’t relax me. If your time is limited, your activity doesn’t have to take up much time. A simple 10 minute walk can do wonders and help break up your day.
23. Solve Issues You Can Control
One of the best ways to lower stress and anxiety is to focus on issues that are causing you stress that you can control. Make a list and then develop plans to solve them. There are many stresses that people deal with daily that can be solved but they don’t. Instead, they keep dealing with the same stress over and over. Take action and get these issues resolved once and for all. Once you do, you’ll be wondering why you didn’t do it sooner.
24. Monitor Blood Pressure At Home
Let’s face it, other than being a doctor office all the time how else can you monitor your blood pressure. Home monitoring is growing in popularity and is high recommend in the new blood pressure guidelines. It can also get true readings and avoid elevated readings at the doctor due to various different reasons that you are not experiencing most of your days.
Home monitoring can help you determine if your lifestyle or nutrition changes are working. It can also alert you and your physician about potential health complications. If you would like to get a good home monitor at an affordable price you can check out the ones I use and recommend by checking out my blog post by clicking here. I also tell you a bunch of home monitoring tips that are crucial for taking your blood pressure the right way.
25. Surround Yourself With Supportive People
If you’re hanging around people that encourage you do do unhealthy things, like excess alcohol or a bad diet, trying to lowering blood pressure will be a much more difficult task. Supportive family and friends can help you improve your health and blood pressure. They can encourage you to make the right healthy decisions, become exercise partners and more. If you are having trouble finding the right people, you can join a support group which will direct you to the right people. Supportive people can be a moral booster, offer you the proper tips and be there for emotional support.
If you found this Blood Pressure topic interesting check out these related blood pressure articles also found in this same website:
- Consume Magnesium To Lower Blood Pressure
- 24 Foods To Reduce Blood Pressure
- When Low Blood Pressure Is An Emergency: Call 911