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What are natural treatments for hypertension?

Dr. Jeanne Morrison, PhD
Family Practitioner

There are several alternative treatments for hypertension. Eating nutritious meals daily and getting a sufficient amount of rest will help with problems of fatigue. Oftentimes, even modest amounts of activity are still difficult for some people with hypertension. However, it is still important to get some form of physical activity in order to extend the quality of your life. Consult with your doctor about what kind of exercise is best for you. A small square of 70 percent dark chocolate daily may help lower systolic blood pressure, but eat less than an ounce as it is high in calories. Other forms of alternative treatment for hypertension include steering clear of stress, smoking, birth control pills, environments where the altitude is above 8,000 feet, and actions that lower your blood pressures, such as resting in a sauna or hot tub for five to ten minutes or taking hot baths and showers (but do not fluctuate between hot and cold water). Make sure to let your doctor know about any supplements you are taking, as some of them may interact with medications for high blood pressure or even raise blood pressure (such as ephedra and licorice root).

Blood pressure is a measurement of the pressure as the heart pumps and blood flows in the arteries. Cardiovascular exercise will help to strengthen the heart, slow down heart rate, and decrease pressure in the arteries. Additional tips include:

  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Decrease salt intake
  • Decrease fat intake
  • Limit alcohol use
  • Stop smoking
  • Reduce stress

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.