Caffeine, alcohol, and tobacco should be eliminated. Stress reduction techniques, such as biofeedback, meditation, yoga, deep breathing exercises, and regular aerobic exercise may offer some benefit in lowering blood pressure without the use of drugs. For example, RESPeRATE is a computerized biofeedback device approved by the FDA for reducing stress and lowering blood pressure. It works by analyzing your breathing pattern to create a personalized melody that it transmits to earphones. The goal is to synchronize your breathing to the melody that you hear through the earphones - about 10 breaths a minute, with particularly long exhalations. The theory behind RESPeRATE is that many people with high blood pressure have increased activity of the sympathetic nervous system - the part of your nervous system that controls blood flow. Slow, deep breathing reduces this activity, allowing blood pressure to return to normal. Studies of people with high blood pressure who use RESPeRATE as directed report an average decrease in blood pressure of 14 mm Hg.
Find out more about this book:What the Drug Companies Won't Tell You and Your Doctor Doesn't Know: The Alternative Treatments That May Change Your Life--and the Prescriptions That Could Harm You