There are several lifestyle changes that can help to lower and maintain a healthy blood pressure. Here are four ways to help manage blood pressure:
1. Eat a Healthy Diet
A diet that is rich in whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins, and low in saturated and trans fats, sodium, and added sugars can help to lower blood pressure. This is because a healthy diet can help to reduce inflammation, improve blood vessel function, and support overall cardiovascular health. Some examples of foods that are beneficial for blood pressure include leafy green vegetables, berries, nuts, and fish.
2. Exercise Regularly
Regular physical activity, such as brisk walking, cycling, or swimming, can help to lower blood pressure and improve overall cardiovascular health. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise most days of the week. Talk to your doctor before starting a new exercise program, especially if you have any health concerns.
3. Manage Stress
Chronic stress can contribute to high blood pressure. Finding ways to manage stress, such as through relaxation techniques like deep breathing, meditation, or yoga, can help to lower blood pressure and improve overall health. Other ways to manage stress include getting enough sleep, spending time with loved ones, and engaging in enjoyable activities.
4. Supplement with OPCs
There is some evidence to suggest that OPCs may help to lower blood pressure, although the exact mechanism is not entirely clear.
Some studies suggest that OPCs may help to improve blood vessel function and reduce inflammation in the body, which can help to lower blood pressure. For example, a study published in the Journal of Human Hypertension found that taking a grape seed extract supplement containing OPCs for eight weeks led to a significant reduction in both systolic and diastolic blood pressure in people with pre-hypertension.
Another study published in the Journal of Cardiovascular Pharmacology found that OPCs from pine bark extract may help to improve blood vessel function and reduce inflammation in people with hypertension.
It's also important to note that maintaining a healthy weight, limiting alcohol intake, and quitting smoking can also help to lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke. If you have high blood pressure, it's important to work closely with your doctor to develop a comprehensive treatment plan that includes lifestyle changes and, if needed, medication.