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How To Lower High Blood Pressure Effectively

How To Lower High Blood Pressure Effectively

High blood pressure or hypertension is a notorious silent killer.

Its symptoms are so darn inconspicuous; direct signs usually show up when it’s already in a deadly, emergency level that can trigger a heart attack or stroke. High blood pressure is taking more than 1,100 lives in the US every day.

We don’t want to wait for that to happen, would we?

A holistic approach is best

Medication these days may seem to be the first and obvious choice—but that doesn’t have to be. You see, our blood pressure also increases as we age. Medication is advised for those aged 50 years old and above because they are more susceptible to cardiovascular risks. For adults, major factors that contribute to hypertension risks at an early age are usually caused by our lifestyle, if not our genes.

Our manner of living plays a crucial role in treating our high blood pressure. A holistic approach where you successfully control your blood pressure with a healthy lifestyle, you might avoid, delay, reduce or may even ditch the need for medication altogether.

1. Restrict salty foods in your diet

Let’s just say, salt or sodium makes our blood pressure shoot through the roof because it causes an imbalance to our delicate bloodstreams. Do reduce your intake of salt by:

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  • examining food labels and ingredients
  • eating less processed foods
  • eating less fast food
  • avoiding adding salt itself into your meals

2. Lose weight

If you are carrying extra pounds, reduce some… or a lot. Losing weight might be the best lifestyle change to make for controlling and lowering blood pressure. Overweight and obese people are prone to greater risks of high blood pressure, so heads up and start sweating!

To get you started, below are links to quick and effective ways to get fit:

9 Tips You Should Really Do When You Want To Lose Weight Fast

15 Unconventional Ways To Lose Weight Quickly

3. Exercise regularly

I can’t stress enough how important physical activities are in lowering blood pressure. Consistency is the key, not intensity, because once you’ve stopped exercising, your blood pressure can skyrocket again. I recommend cardio exercises such as:

  • walking
  • jogging
  • cycling
  • swimming
  • dancing

You may obtain a gym membership (and use it), hire a fitness trainer, or you can also develop your own exercise program.

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Before are additional links to help you boost your exercise regimen:

15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It)

7 Ways To Advance Your Workout Program

4. Moderate alcohol consumption

Small amounts of alcohol may potentially reduce blood pressure. Be wary not to drink alcohol as a first aid remedy if you’re having hypertension because an excessive intake of alcohol can make things worse. What’s more is that it can potentially reduce the effectiveness of blood pressure medication in the future—yikes! Drink in moderation.

5. The DASH diet

The DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) diet consists of eating lots of fruits, vegetables, whole grain, low-fat dairy foods, as well as a limited quantity of poultry, fish, meat, nuts, and beans.

It aims to systematically encourage people to consume less salt and increase the intake of calcium, magnesium, potassium to help lower blood pressure.

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6. Avoid or reduce stress as much as possible

Stress itself can trigger high blood pressure. Stress can also cause you to drink alcohol, smoke cigarettes and munch on those (potentially salty) comfort foods sitting inside the fridge. Although we know what we are doing is important, stress, unfortunately, causes our mind and body to wear out.

Tips to avoid and reduce stress:

  • Know your triggers: it can be things, events or people, try to spend less time and attention on them.
  • Think of plans to solve problems that are under your control.
  • Take some time to channel the stress into something recreational and motivational. Like meditating or doing your exercise in forms of yoga instead of smoking.
  • Turn stress into productivity
  • Focus on things that turned out good. Develop a grateful attitude and count your blessings.

To help you flesh out the ideas mentioned, below are links to explain things for you:

How to Quit Smoking Efficiently

5 Ways To Turn Stress Into Productivity

7. Have your blood pressure checked

Monitoring your blood pressure is important so you can be certain if your lifestyle changes are working.

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Buy that familiar upper-arm cuff device (aka sphygmomanometer) if you don’t have one in your home – trust me, it’s a sound investment. Check your blood pressure 30 minutes before and after you eat, after exercise and before you go to bed.

Summing it all up

Relying solely on quick first-aid fixes is not advisable in this particular matter. Learn how to lower high blood pressure. High blood pressure could be asymptomatic in nature, so a healthy, not-so-stressful, less salty and less fatty diet is not a guarantee.

If something doesn’t feel quite right, pay your doctor a visit first and foremost. The doctor’s expert opinion will tell you whether you should take medication or you can regulate blood pressure through lifestyle changes outlined above or if you need to visit your doctor more frequently.

Featured photo credit: netdoctor.cdnds.net/ via netdoctor.cdnds.net

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Christopher Jan Benitez

Freelance Writer

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Last Updated on March 13, 2019

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

1. Work on the small tasks.

When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

2. Take a break from your work desk.

Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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3. Upgrade yourself

Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

4. Talk to a friend.

Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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6. Paint a vision to work towards.

If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

7. Read a book (or blog).

The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

8. Have a quick nap.

If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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9. Remember why you are doing this.

Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

10. Find some competition.

Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

11. Go exercise.

Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

12. Take a good break.

Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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