Manage Hypertension Without Medications

Hypertension or high blood pressure is a common health problem in modern world. As the world progresses more, the incidence/prevalence of hypertension is also increasing, due to stress of modern life, lack of physical activity and various other factors. If you are diagnosed with hypertension (you may have no symptoms, whatsoever of hypertension), your doctor will certainly ask you to take two pronged strategy for management of hypertension, namely non drug (pharmacological) management and medications. All patients with hypertension are advised about non pharmacological management of hypertension. Hence, it is important for all patients with hypertension, to know clearly about non pharmacological management of hypertension, so that following it becomes easy and simple.ID-100232068

Non pharmacological management of hypertension usually include lifestyle modification (such as increasing physical activity), dietary modification, avoidance of tobacco and excess alcohol, reduced intake of sodium (common table salt), stress/anxiety reduction, weight reduction (if patient is obese or overweight) etc. Truncal obesity is directly related to increased risk of hypertension and cardiovascular problems.

Lifestyle modification:

The most important lifestyle modification is to increase physical activity. It is advised that moderate physical exercise (such as brisk walking) should be done for at least 150 minutes a week, spread over five days.

Dietary modifications:

Dietary changes include, reduced salt (sodium) intake, increase potassium intake, increased fiber intake, reduced intake of saturated and animal fats, adequate protein intake and moderation in alcohol intake (maximum 2 drinks a day, ideally one drink a day).

Other modifications:

Tobacco consumption or smoking should strictly be followed. Stress management can be done by various methods such as yoga or meditation. If you are hypertensive and obese (or overweight), the aim should be to try to bring BMI to 25 or less.

Non pharmacological methods can be useful for patients with hypertension as well for individuals with pre-hypertension (systolic blood pressure of 120-139 mm Hg and diastolic blood pressure of 80-89 mm Hg) and normotensive (normal blood pressure) individuals. For pre-hypertensive individuals, following non pharmacological management of hypertension can delay or prevent development of hypertension and for hypertensive individuals, it can bring down high blood pressure to great extent that drug management of hypertension may not be required (although in a very few individuals only) or it can help reduce blood pressure to some extent and aid the medications used for treatment of hypertension.

Hypertension is a silent killer (as most patients with high blood pressure do not have any symptoms, but silently/asymptomatically it affects cardiovascular system and lead to heart attacks and strokes, which are leading cause of death across the world, developed as well as underdeveloped nations). Hence, one should not neglect hypertension and it should be adequately treated, to keep the blood pressure within target range.

Image courtesy of [patrisyu] at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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1 Comment

  • Remy November 27, 2014 09.20 am

    Thank you for this very useful post. A large population is suffering from hypertension so they should be able to read this. We have hypertension in our lineage so I eat wisely.

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