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What Causes High Blood Pressure And How To Control It Without Medication

What Causes High Blood Pressure And How To Control It Without Medication

High blood pressure is a common term, yet the reality only dawns after the first diagnosis. Also called hypertension, high blood pressure is a dangerous condition. The heart is left to work twice as hard to pump blood leading to the arteries that harden and cause strokes, kidney diseases, and the development of a possible heart failure.

What causes high blood pressure?

The causes may be related to old age, genetics, or family history. These may not be possible to reverse totally.

The other causes are lifestyle related. Once you are diagnosed with the condition of high blood pressure, medication is recommended to assist in lowering the pressure. Apart from medication, there are many ways to help control high blood pressure, by simply following a few lifestyle changes. (*Please consult your doctor before making any changes to your medication)

So, what causes high blood pressure?

1. Smoking

Quit the smoking habit. The nicotine in cigarette smoke increases your blood pressure and heart rate as well.[1] It also narrows your arteries and narrows the walls.

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Apart from asking for help, you can try this app – Quit smoking – QuitNow! It shows you the money and time you’ve saved for the cigarettes you didn’t smoke. Great motivation! Right?

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    2. Stress

    Calm down!

    Chronic stress levels contribute to blood pressure complications. Analyze what factors cause stress and work towards healing these. A possible solution is through meditation, mind healing practices and activities like yoga. This yoga app provides tutorial that you can try immediately by just following what the expert does.

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      Family and friends that are supportive improve health conditions encouraging you to resolve any issue that may be causing the increase in blood pressure levels. If you require further emotional or morale-boosting support, take the time to join a support group that can offer practical methods to cope with the condition.

       3. Lacking Physical Exercise

      Take time to engage in consistent physical exercises. Physical exercise undoubtedly controls blood pressure. Get up and get moving!

      Too lazy to start? Try the 7-minute workout below

      4. Excess of salt

      Lose the Salt! Sodium intake is linked to increasing blood pressure levels.

      Reduce sodium intake by choosing products with lower amounts of sodium. Avoid processed foods, as there is added sodium in processed foods. Use spices and herbs rather than salt to flavor food.

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      5. Alcohol and Caffeine

      Watch toxic consumption!

      Reduce alcohol and caffeine intake. Alcohol raises blood pressure and reduces medication effectiveness. There is a possibility that caffeine increases blood pressure.

       6. Overweight

      Lose those pounds!

      By not taking note of obesity or weight gain blood pressure is affected. Overweight conditions even disrupt breathing patterns that cause sleep apnea. This directly results in a higher blood pressure level.

      The lifestyle change of losing weight effectively affects reducing blood pressure and being more conscious of the waistline, as extra weight waste places a higher risk leading to blood pressure complication.

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      7. Eat wisely

      Follow a routine of whole grain, vegetables, fruit, and dairy products that are low-fat. Journal your food intake, it keeps you accountable and aware of what you eat.

      Boost potassium levels as potassium lessens sodium effects, Fruits and vegetables are high in potassium and better than supplements Read the labels when you shop to maintain that eating plan with healthy criteria that stays dominant.

      There may be no magic wand to cast away the spell of blood pressure. With a smart diet and regular exercise, your blood pressure will maintain a healthy level.  Some tantalizing recipes that will assist are

      Lasagna Rolls with tofu – An Italian vegetarian delicacy

        Chicken,Broccoli and Tomato Salad – A substantial  salad as a main course

           Lemon Lentil Salad – Lentils with a mix of Salmon

            Reference

            [1] http://www.webmd.com/hypertension-high-blood-pressure/guide/smoking-kicking-habit#1

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            Nena Tenacity

            Nena is passionate about writing. She shares her everyday health and lifestyle tips on Lifehack.

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            Last Updated on July 10, 2020

            How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

            How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

            We all have them—those hurtful, frustrating, offensive, manipulative people in our lives. No matter how hard we try to surround ourselves with positive and kind people, there will always be those who will disrespect, insult, berate, and misuse you if we allow them to.

            We may, for a variety of reasons, not be able to avoid them, but we can determine how we interact with them and how we allow them to interact with us.

            So, how to take control of your life and stop being pushed around?

            Learning to set clear firm boundaries with the people in our lives at work and in our personal lives is the best way to protect ourselves from the negative effects of this kind of behavior.

            What Boundaries Are (And What They’re Not)

            Boundaries are limits

            —they are not threats or ultimatums. Boundaries inform or teach. They are not a form of punishment.

            Boundaries are firm lines—determined by you—which cannot be crossed by those around you. They are guidelines for how you will allow others to treat you and what kind of behaviors you will expect.

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            Healthy personal boundaries help protect you from physical or emotional pain. You may also need to set firm boundaries at work to ensure you and your time are not disrespected. Don’t allow others to take advantage of your kindness and generosity.

            Clear boundaries communicate to others that you demand respect and consideration—that you are willing to stand up for yourself and that you will not be a doormat for anyone. They are a “no trespassing” sign that makes it very clear when a line has been crossed and that there will be consequences for doing so.

            Boundaries are not set with the intention of changing other people. They may change how people interact with you, but they are more about enforcing your needs than attempting to change the general behavior and attitude of others.

            How to Establish Boundaries and Take Control of Your Life

            Here are some ways that you can establish boundaries and take control of your life.

            1. Self-Awareness Comes First

            Before you can establish boundaries with others, you first need to understand what your needs are.

            You are entitled to respect. You have the right to protect yourself from inappropriate or offensive behavior. Setting boundaries is a way of honoring your needs.

            To set appropriate boundaries, you need to be clear about what healthy behaviors look like—what healthy relationships look like.

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            You first have to become more aware of your feelings and honest with yourself about your expectations and what you feel is appropriate behavior:

            • Where do you need to establish better boundaries?
            • When do you feel disrespected?
            • When do you feel violated, frustrated, or angered by the behavior of others?
            • In what situations do you feel you are being mistreated or taken advantage of?
            • When do you want to be alone?
            • How much space do you need?

            You need to honor your own needs and boundaries before you can expect others to honor them. This allows you to take control of your life.

            2. Clear Communication Is Essential

            Inform others clearly and directly what your expectations are. It is essential to have clear communication if you want others to respect your boundaries. Explain in an honest and respectful tone what you find offensive or unacceptable.

            Many people simply aren’t aware that they are behaving inappropriately. They may never have been taught proper manners or consideration for others.

            3. Be Specific but Don’t Blame

            Taking a blaming or punishing attitude automatically puts people on the defensive. People will not listen when they feel attacked. It’s part of human nature.

            That said, you do not need to overexplain or defend yourself. Boundaries are not open to compromise.

            Sample language:

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            • “You may not…yell or raise your voice to me…”
            • “I need…to be treated with respect…”
            • “It’s not okay when…you take things from my desk without asking…”
            • “I won’t…do your work…cover for you anymore…”
            • “It’s not acceptable when…you ridicule or insult me…”
            • “I am uncomfortable when…you use offensive language”
            • “I will no longer be able to…lend you money…”

            Being able to communicate these without sounding accusatory is essential if you want others to respect your boundaries so you can take control of your life.

            4. Consequences Are Often Necessary

            Determine what the appropriate consequences will be when boundaries are crossed. If it’s appropriate, be clear about those consequences upfront when communicating those boundaries to others.

            Follow through. People won’t respect your boundaries if you don’t enforce them.

            Standing our ground and forcing consequences doesn’t come easily to us. We want to be nice. We want people to like us, but we shouldn’t have to trade our self-respect to gain friends or to achieve success.

            We may be tempted to let minor disrespect slide to avoid conflict, but as the familiar saying goes, “if you give people an inch, they’ll take a mile.”

            It’s much easier to address offensive or inappropriate behavior now than to wait until that behavior has gotten completely out of hand.

            It’s also important to remember that positive reinforcement is even more powerful than negative consequences. When people do alter the way they treat you, acknowledge it. Let people know that you notice and appreciate their efforts.

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            Final Thoughts

            Respect is always a valid reason for setting a boundary. Don’t defend yourself or your needs. Boundaries are often necessary to protect your time, your space, and your feelings. And these are essential if you want to take control of your life.

            Start with the easiest boundaries first. Setting boundaries is a skill that needs to be practiced. Enlist support from others if necessary. Inform people immediately when they have crossed the line.

            Don’t wait. Communicate politely and directly. Be clear about the consequences and follow them through.

            The better you become at setting your own boundaries, the better you become at recognizing and respecting the boundaries of others.

            Remember that establishing boundaries is your right. You are entitled to respect. You can’t control how other people behave, but you do have control over the way you allow people to treat you.

            Learning to set boundaries is not always easy, but with time, it will become more comfortable. You may eventually find that boundaries become automatic and you no longer need to consciously set them.

            They will simply become a natural extension of your self-respect.

            Featured photo credit: Thomas Kelley via unsplash.com

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