1. MANAGE STRESS: Although stress is a normal part of being human, it is out perception and how we choose to deal with stressors that inevitably occur. Stress and anxiety cause chemicals to be released into the body that elevate blood pressure and cause a reduction ofblood flow to the heart. Excessive stress will elevate LDL cholesterol levels as well.
- Prioritize – write down your priorities
- Breathe – Full, deep belly breathing at least five minutes every day and gradually increase to ten minutes daily.
- Yoga, especially yin and restorative yoga
- Listen to calm music such as classical or yoga music
- Warm, aromatherapy bath with 3-4 cups Epsom salts, 10 drops of lavender essential oil and 1 cup baking soda
- Change how you view situations
- Surround yourself with like-minded people and friends. You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with. Be aware of relationships that don’t feel good and eliminate unhealthy, stressful social behaviors including arguments, drama, inactivity, unhealthy eating and over-eating.
- Dissolve unhealthy lose-win relationships and focus on attracting only win-win relationships.
University of Utah psychologist found that women in strained marriages are more likely to feeldepressed and suffer high blood pressure, obesity and other signs of “metabolic syndrome,” a group of risk factors for heart disease, stroke and diabetes.
2. ELIMINATE ALL PARTIALLY HYDROGENATED OILS (TRANS FATS): Partially hydrogenated oils are found in thousands of processed and fast foods (breakfast cereals, cookies,chips, fried foods, packaged foods). Restaurant food, especially from fast food chains, often serve food loaded with trans fats.
Consequences of a diet high in trans fats include:
- Increased inflammation
- Decreased immune function
- Reduced testosterone
- Decreased IQ and learning disabilities
- Elevated blood pressure
- Free radical production
- Heart Disease
- Liver damage
3. LOSE BODY FAT: This is achieved with the right mindset, a nutrient-rich, whole food diet, smart exercise and daily movement, less television and sitting, balanced hormones, sufficient sleep and stress management. Excess body fat stresses your joints and organs, including your heart. Decreasing body fat in a healthy, slow, steady mannerwill improve your health, lower your cholesterol, reduce blood pressure andyour risk of diabetes.
4. CONSISTENT EXERCISE: This isn’t breaking news. Daily movement will help you reduce stress, decrease body fat, increase your metabolism and lower your risk of diabetes. Smart exercise will lower your blood pressure, increase HDL cholesterol and loweryour triglycerides. Take a brisk 30 minute walk every day. Lift weights. There is evidence that resistance training results in a more favorable balance inmyocardial oxygen supply and demand than aerobic exercise due to the lower heart rate and higher myocardial perfusion pressure. Resistance training with weights can control or prevent hypertension. Circulation 116: 572-584, 2007.
5. ELIMINATE HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP, which is the number one source of calories for most Americans. You’ll find high-fructose corn syrup in sodas, syrup that goes into your Latte from Starbucks, and many packaged, processed foods. HFCS is extremely toxic to your liver, increases inflammation, your weight, causes fatty liver disease and creates an aggressive insulin response.
6. SUPPLEMENTS TO CONSIDER FOR HYPERTENSION: Omega-3 fish oils, magnesium, vitamin D, COQ10, Biotics VasculoSirt, Green Tea Extract, Hawthorne Extract, Digestive enzymes, Probiotics, Ginger
Vitamin D – Mark Houston, MD, director of the Hypertension Institute in Nashville states, “Vitamin D is very important in blood pressure control due to an effect on a hormone call renin, that controls blood pressure. If Vitamin D is low, renin is increased and this in turn causes the arteries to constrict and increase the blood pressure.”
Ginger has blood pressure-lowering effects that can protect against the chronic brain injurycaused by hypertension. Vascul Pharmacol, 2005 Oct;43(4):234-41
Diuretics cause potassium levels to drop increasing the risk of hypokalemia. With calcium channel blockers systolic and diastolic blood pressures are reduced during exercise which may result in light headedness and peripheral edema post-exercise. Additional side effects from hypertension drugs include: dizziness, increased risk of breast cancer, memory loss, nausea, asthma-like symptoms, joint pain and impotence in men.
SUPPLEMENTS FOR ELEVATED CHOLESTEROL: Omega-3 fish oils, tocotrienols, pantethine, vitamin D, Biotics VasculoSirt or GlucoBalance, LipidSirt, CoQ10, Green Tea Extract
Read more about cholesterol and the side effects from statin drugs in my book, The Power of 4: Your Ultimate Guide Guaranteed to Change Your Body and Transform Your Life.
A study in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition concluded that a high serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentration is associated with a significant increase in HDL cholesterol, and significant decreases in LDL cholesterol and triglycerides. In another study, men with higher vitamin D levels had a 59 percentreduction in heart attacks. Therefore, if vitamin D’s only benefit is to reduce heart attack rates by 59 percent, the net savings (after deducting the cost of the vitamin D, if every American supplemented properly) would be around $85billion each year. Arch Intern Med. 2008 Jun 9; 168(11):1174-80
7. FOR HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE increase potassium rich foods such as vegetables, fruits, legumes and fish. Most Americans consume only half the recommended daily intake of potassium and twice the suggested limit for sodium. Potassium can influence blood sugar levels by increasing sodium excretion from the body by stimulating the blood vessels to dilate, opening potassium channels.
Those with hypertension should always rule out heavy metal toxicity.
FOR ELEVATED CHOLESTEROL increase consumption of plant sterols, sometimes called phytosterols. Plant sterols are the healthy compounds that occur naturally in a variety of plant foods such as fruits and vegetables, seeds and nuts. Consuming eight servings of fruit and vegetables a day dramatically cuts heart disease risk. People who followed this simple, easy and effective method for a study published in the European Heart Journal had a whopping 22 percent lower risk of dying from heart disease than those who didn’t.
8. INCREASE CONSUMPTION OF HEALTHY FATS and ORGANIC PROTEIN: Include healthy fats such as avocado, wild fish, pastured butter, raw (unsalted) organic nuts and seeds, coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil. Protein sources from grass-fed beef and buffalo, cage-free poultry and eggs, wild salmon and fish and whey protein
9. DECREASE ALCOHOL. Alcohol and caffeine cause adrenaline rushes that cause blood pressure to soar. Excess alcohol also leads to insulin resistance. Alcohol disrupts glucose and triglycerides levels, affects your nerves and how your liver processes fat in the blood. Not only is alcohol hard on the body, it causes cellular death in several organs including the brain.
10. ELIMINATE SUGAR, REFINED CARBOHYDRATES and ALL ARTIFICIAL SWEETENERS:
Sugar is more addictive than cocaine and has a profound influence on your brain function and your psychological function. When you consume excess amounts of sugar, yourbody releases excess amounts of insulin, which in turn causes a drop in your blood sugar, also known as hypoglycemia. In addition, sugar is pro-flammatory, damages skin collagen, promotes aging and wrinkles, increases your appetite, depletes your body of B vitamins, causes weight gain, joint degeneration, ADHD and other behavior disorders. This is just a small list of sugars’ toxic side effects. Phenylalanine, especially found in Nutra-Sweet and OTC antihistamines aggravate high bloodpressure.
Hypertension and elevated cholesterol can be managed without pharmaceutical drugs by following a healthy lifestyle that includes a nutrient-rich, whole food diet, sunshine, stress management, specific supplements that correct nutrient deficiencies and daily exercise!
Copyright © Paula Owens
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