When going in for your annual checkup at the doctor’s office, your blood pressure is always one of the first things taken after your weight.
Normal blood pressure is considered to be around 120 over 80 but for many, both men and women, their blood pressure number is way above the norm.
High blood pressure can unknowingly affect the eyes, brain, arteries, kidney and heart and is often known as “the silent killer.” At the age of 22, I’ve been living with high blood pressure for years.
Even though my doctor prescribed me medicine to take every day to help balance out my blood pressure, she also told me several steps you can take to help lower high blood pressure. If your blood pressure is already at a normal level, these tips can help sustain that normalcy. These tips are also great because by doing one thing, you’re actually taking steps to complete the others.
Watch your salt intake
While this may seem like the most obvious way to lower your blood pressure, it can be the hardest. It’s not just about the amount of salt you add while cooking salt to your food before you eat it, it’s about watching the sodium in the food you eat. A lot of prepackaged food advertise how they are low in fat or calories, but what about the sodium level? Microwavable meals are also a huge culprit when it comes to having ridiculous amounts of sodium in the product. Make sure you check the nutrition facts on your food!
Maintain a healthy weight
Being overweight/obese can be a reason why blood pressure stays at an elevated level. Keeping a healthy weight for your height and body frame can really help you to keep your blood pressure at a healthy number. By exercising at least 20-30 minutes each day, you can With every pound you lose, you help to decrease your blood pressure to a more normal number. Plus, maintaining a healthy weight keeps keeps you healthier overall by reducing your change of many diseases so it’s a win-win situation!
By eating a diet of fresh fruits and vegetables, low-cholesterol foods, lean proteins, etc., you can help to reduce your blood pressure level. Try and increase your potassium intake to help combat your sodium levels. Added benefit? A healthy diet helps lead you to a healthier body and a happier mood.
Drink less alcohol
Did you know that the alcohol you drink can be a reason why your blood pressure is up so high? Well if you didn’t, now you do! Limit yourself to no more than two drinks whenever drinking. Excessive drinking can skyrocket your blood pressure suddenly and, if you’re taking medicine to help regulate your levels, lessen the effectiveness of the medicine.
Lessening the stress in your life is definitely easier said than done–we’re only human. We have so much to accomplish during the day that it can be stressful thinking about completing everything. But take an hour out of every day to just relax and have time to yourself. Take a bath, read a book, go to a yoga class…whatever brings you comfort and relaxation.