Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is a condition that occurs when the force of your blood pumping against your artery walls is too high. This pressure can lead to serious health conditions including heart disease. Addressing your high blood pressure and taking actions to control it can reduce your risk of developing further health issues.

Lose Weight

If you are experiencing high blood pressure, the first thing you should consider is trying to lose weight. Getting down to a healthier weight can give your body some relief. Carrying a lot of extra weight only adds more pressure and makes your arteries work even harder. Even losing a little weight can make a big difference. Weight loss is a long journey, so don’t be discouraged as you go through this process. Celebrate the little victories and try to keep at your goals.

Spend More Time Being Active

Regular exercise is another great way to lower your blood pressure. Focus on aerobic exercises. Good examples include walking, jogging, dancing, swimming, or cycling. These types of exercises get your heart rate up and can help to strengthen your respiratory and vascular systems. It’s important to remember that consistency is key. As you regularly exercise, your blood pressure will continue to decrease. If you stop exercising, it will only lead your blood pressure to rise again.

Eat a Healthy Diet

The way you eat directly affects your health. If you have high blood pressure, it’s worth taking a look at your diet and making some changes. Prioritize eating fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Avoid foods high in cholesterol and saturated fats. Changing your diet can be difficult, so you may want to find strategies to help you. To start, you should keep a food diary. This gives you a realistic look at how you eat and you can see what changes you need to make. As you make changes, it can be helpful to have others eat the same way. You can talk to your family or friends about changing your diet together so you can have more support.

Cut Bad Habits

As you begin making positive changes to address your blood pressure, you should also consider things you should be removing from your life. Certain substances can exacerbate your condition and should be avoided. Smoking and drinking alcohol fall under this category. You should do your best to quit both of these habits. Keep in mind that quitting cold turkey can be difficult and can likely lead to a relapse. Instead, understand that quitting is a process. Your goal is to reduce these habits as much as you can.

If you have high blood pressure, you are at risk for several chronic diseases. You need to begin taking steps to address your blood pressure so you can be healthy. Making changes in your life will make a difference in your health.

Speaking with a doctor is an ideal first step. Click here to learn more about hypertension and find a health care provider.