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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

More by this author

Christopher Jan Benitez

Christopher is a passionate writer sharing about lifestyle tips on Lifehack.

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Last Updated on May 25, 2019

20 Spaghetti Squash Recipes For Anyone Who Is Looking For Delicious, Healthy Comfort Food

20 Spaghetti Squash Recipes For Anyone Who Is Looking For Delicious, Healthy Comfort Food

Spaghetti squash is similar to cucumber. It has a shell which is difficult to pierce and this hard flesh surrounds a hollow cavity filled with seeds. When you cook this vegetable, the squash flesh falls away from the inner cavity and only the reminiscent of spaghetti remains. You can get surprised and delighted to see how this vegetable transforms with cooking.

It can act as a great substitute to pasta. It tastes as delicious as the traditional pasta and is equally satisfying but healthier. It is gluten free and contains many nutrients like vitamin A, potassium and folic acid.

This incredible vegetable can be boiled, baked or steamed. And, a lot of recipes can be prepared with spaghetti squash as the chief ingredient. I’m sure the following recipes will make your mouth water.

Breakfast

1. Spiced Coconut Squash Breakfast Porridge

1

    This unconventional porridge, prepared for breakfast, is a perfect dish to start your day. The ingredients include spaghetti squash, organic coconut milk, ginger, coconut flour, maple syrup, cinnamon, sea salt and vanilla extract. It has a comforting and creamy texture and is best served with fresh fruit topping. (Click here for recipe)

    2. Egg and Avocado Spaghetti Squash Boats

    2

      If you’re looking for a light, healthy, gluten free, vegetarian breakfast then avocado spaghetti squash boats is the best option. Besides chopping the squash, breaking the egg and slicing the avocado, this recipe doesn’t require much effort in its preparation. It tastes amazing with egg yolk and salsa and has a rich decadent texture. (Click here for recipe)

      3. Spaghetti Squash Frittata for One

      3

        This frittata, if prepared perfectly, can be an excellent choice for a healthy meal. It is a combination of lots of spaghetti squash, a few white eggs, some red pepper for color and texture, few onions and garlic for flavor, and some fresh herbs for brightness. This dish is usually served large in size and tastes great with tomato sauce and bean balls. (Click here for recipe)

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        4. Ingredient Spaghetti Squash Brunch

        4

          It’s a fast and easy breakfast that contains a poached egg and feta on a pre-roasted pile of spaghetti squash bed. The yolk from the egg floods through the scraps of squash underneath. It almost tastes like an Italian pasta and the light crumble of feta adds more calcium and protein. (Click here for recipe)

          5. Spaghetti Squash Hash Browns

          5

            A very healthy take on hash browns in which spaghetti squash is used in place of potatoes and coconut oil in place of butter. This reduces stress, inflammation and starch, making it healthier than traditional hash browns. It helps lose water weight as well which is helpful for weight loss. The final product is fluffy on the inside but crispy on the outside. It is best served alongside some dippy eggs. (Click here for recipe and image source)

            Lunch

            6. Spaghetti Squash Chow Mein

            6

              Spaghetti squash can not only replace Italian pasta but it can also replace the Chinese noodles. They are a delicious, satisfying dish, prepared by stirring and frying spaghetti squash with a rainbow of other vegetables along with a sweet smelling mixture of fish sauce, rice vinegar and soy. They are gluten free and grease free which makes them healthier. (Click here for recipe)

              7. Parmesan Zucchini and Spaghetti Squash with Pine Nuts

              7

                This dish is a marvelous combination of garlic, spaghetti squash, parmesan, toasted pine and zucchini nuts. It’s super healthy, gluten free, full of vegetables and delicious. Tossed with olive oil, this dish meets all the dietary needs and is perfect for light lunch. You can also add some chicken to increase protein.  (Click here for recipe)

                 8. Spaghetti Squash with Mushrooms Parmesan

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                8

                  Though spaghetti squash provides low calories, you can add meaty mushroom and a good amount of parmesan cheese to increase the amount of calories. It’s a healthy, full of flavor, vegetarian dish, and has cheap and easy ingredients which you can find in market. The final product is yummy and satisfying and can make your lunch, perfect.  (Click here for recipe)

                   9. Spaghetti Squash with Vegan Fire-Roasted Tomato Cream Sauce

                  9

                    A pile of roasted squash is flavored with a sauce made from five ingredients. The vegan fire-roasted tomato cream sauce is made from the mixture of tomatoes, cashews, basil, salt and water. This spicy sauce makes it more delicious and some small amount of basil adds fresh green color and flavor. (Click here for recipe)

                     10. Thai Peanut Spaghetti Squash

                    10

                      Most of the dishes listed here are either Mexican or Italian. This recipe however will give you a fresh Asian feeling. To prepare this, all you need are spaghetti squash and peanut sauce, then by adding some ginger, lime and vinegar you’ll get one of the most delicious recipes. The texture of this dish reminds you of heavenly beaches in Thailand. (Click here for the recipe)

                      Dinner

                      11. Spaghetti Squash Comfort Bowl

                      11

                        This is the perfect kind of bowl that you want to have on a cold evening, sitting on a couch and watching TV. You’ll enjoy its lightly steamed veggies, allspice beans, and the strands of squash as well. It feels creamy but doesn’t seem too heavy. It’s a great dish with intense indulgence, with our best spaghetti squash, the warm beans, and the comforting steamed veggies. (Click here for the recipe)

                        12. Spaghetti Squash Crust Pizza

                        12

                          As you already know, spaghetti squash is a great substitute for pasta, but this dish here shows how these chewy shreds can make a great stand-in for pizza. You can add anything like meat or veggies to the base which is bound with egg whites and flour. The end product is a great gluten free dish. (Click here for the recipe)

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                          13. Spaghetti Squash Fried Rice

                          13

                            Spaghetti squash works as a good substitute to the cauliflower as the base of a fried rice. This recipe includes almost all of the usual ingredients of a fried rice. With green onions, eggs, peanut oil, and some garlic, this dish gives a unique texture that you can never find in your local restaurants. (Click here for the recipe)

                             14. Roasted Garlic Spaghetti Squash Lasagna Boats

                            14

                              If you’re looking for something delicious for the winter evenings, you’ll get fond of these cheesy spaghetti squash boats. To lighten it up, it is filled with tomato sauce, cheese, chicken sausage, parmesan and ricotta. You can easily complete its arrangement ahead of time and bake it before dinner. (Click here for the recipe)

                              15. Chicken Enchilada Stuffed Spaghetti Squash

                              15

                                This Mexican inspired dish has spaghetti squash as a serving bowl and inside it goes enchilada sauce, chicken, cheese, black beans and other veggies wrapped inside a corn tortilla blanket. You can also use spinach in place of the corn and black beans. Topped with sauce galore, this dish can be served as a family fun meal.  (Click here for the recipe)

                                Dessert

                                16. Sweet Spaghetti Squash Kugel with Apples and Raisins

                                16

                                  If you can afford spaghetti squash, coconut sugar, some eggs and few other ingredients, then this dish must be your cheapest choice. This noodle is a delight in all seasons. The addition of some apples and raisins results in its fruity freshness. (Click here for the recipe)

                                  17. Spaghetti Squash Coconut Custard Pie

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                                  17

                                    With the fine sweetness from vanilla extract and coconut, this dessert can be a great hit among guests. The spaghetti squash drowns in an egg batter to make it lighter than a cream pie. You can play and experiment with the ingredients and see surprising results.  (Click here for the recipe)

                                     18. Spaghetti Squash Cake With Cream Cheese Glaze

                                    18

                                      This desert will be a delicious treat to those who are a fan of carrot cake. Spaghetti squash is a vegetable with pleasant taste, lending fiber, potassium and vitamins. So, if you drape it in cream cheese frosting, you will end with this mouth- watering cake. This dessert has so many health benefits and is also great for a Thanksgiving dinner. (Click here for the recipe)

                                       19. Spaghetti Squash Kheer

                                      19

                                        Kheer is a rice pudding made by boiling rice with cow milk and sugar. But this type of kheer replaces boiling rice with noodles swapped out of spaghetti squash and cow milk with coconut milk. By pouring some ghee, you can add necessary richness in it. It is healthier than traditional kheer and can act as a great dessert for your evenings. (Click here for the recipe)

                                         20. Cinnamon Spice Spaghetti Squash Cake

                                        20

                                          By now, you must be surprised by the versatility of spaghetti squash. But your best surprise will probably come after you finish preparing this cake. This cake is a game changer. You’ll have the taste of lots of veggies like cinnamon, allspice maple syrup and ginger, all inside a single cake.  It’s a perfect treat for picky eaters. (Click here for the recipe)

                                          Featured photo credit: Spaghetti Squash with Fire Roasted Tomato, Olive and Baby Spinach Sauce via commons.wikimedia.org

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