Medically reviewed by Judith Marcin, M.D. — created by Marjorie Hecht — updated on January 31, 2020

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High blood pressure, or hypertension, is called the “silent killer” for good reason. It regularly has no symptoms, however is a major risk for heart disease and stroke. And these conditions are among the leading causes of death in the United claims (1).

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About one in three U.S. Adults has actually high blood pressure (2).

Your blood pressure is measure in millimeters of mercury, i m sorry is abbreviated as mm Hg. There room two numbers affiliated in the measurement:

Systolic blood pressure. The peak number to represent the press in your blood vessels when your heart beats.Diastolic blood pressure. The bottom number to represent the press in her blood vessels in between beats, as soon as your love is resting.

Your blood pressure depends on exactly how much blood her heart is pumping, and also how much resistance over there is to blood circulation in her arteries. The narrow your arteries, the higher your blood pressure.

Blood pressure reduced than 120/80 mm Hg is considered normal. Blood pressure that’s 130/80 mm Hg or an ext is considered high. If her numbers are above normal but under 130/80 mm Hg, you loss into the classification of elevated blood pressure. This means that you’re at hazard for arising high blood push (3).

The good news around elevated blood press is the lifestyle alters can significantly reduce your numbers and also lower your hazard — there is no requiring medications.

Here are 17 effective ways to reduced your blood pressure levels:

In a 2013 study, sedentary larger adults that participated in aerobic practice training lowered your blood press by an median of 3.9 percent systolic and 4.5 percent diastolic (4). These results are as an excellent as part blood press medications.

As girlfriend regularly boost your heart and also breathing rates, in time your heart gets stronger and also pumps with much less effort. This puts less pressure on your arteries and also lowers her blood pressure.

How much task should you effort for? A 2013 report by the American college of Cardiology (ACC) and the American heart Association (AHA) advises moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical task for 40-minute sessions, three to four times every week (5).

If finding 40 minute at a time is a challenge, there might still it is in benefits when the time is separated into 3 or 4 10- come 15-minute segments throughout the job (6).

The American college of Sports medication (ACSM) makes comparable recommendations (7).

But girlfriend don’t have to run marathons. Raising your activity level can be as an easy as:

using the stairswalking rather of drivingdoing family members choresplaying a team sport

Just perform it regularly and also work approximately at least fifty percent an hour every day of center activity.

One example of moderate task that can have big results is tai chi. A 2017 testimonial on the results of tai chi and high blood pressure shows an all at once average the a 15.6 mm Hg drop in systolic blood pressure and a 10.7 mm Hg drop in diastolic blood pressure, compared to people who didn’t exercise at every (8).

A 2014 testimonial on exercise and lowering blood pressure discovered that over there are countless combinations of exercise that deserve to lower blood pressure. Aerobic exercise, resistance training, high-intensity interval training, brief bouts of practice throughout the day, or wade 10,000 procedures a day might all reduced blood pressure (9).

Ongoing studies proceed to indicate that there are still benefits to even light physics activity, especially in older adult (10).

Many scientific studies display that restricting sugar and refined carbohydrates can aid you shed weight and lower her blood pressure.

A 2010 study compared a low-carb diet to a low-fat diet. The low-fat diet contained a diet drug. Both diets developed weight loss, however the low-carb diet was much more effective in lowering blood pressure.

The low-carb diet lower blood push by 4.5 mm Hg diastolic and also 5.9 mm Hg systolic. The diet the low-fat plus the diet medicine lowered blood press by only 0.4 mm Hg diastolic and 1.5 mm Hg systolic (12).

A 2012 evaluation of low-carb diets and also heart disease risk discovered that these diets lower blood push by an typical of 3.10 mm Hg diastolic and 4.81 mm Hg systolic (13).

Another side impact of a low-carb, low-sugar diet is that you feeling fuller longer, due to the fact that you’re consuming an ext protein and fat.

Best foods for High Blood Pressure

Increasing her potassium intake and also cutting ago on salt can also lower her blood press (14).

Potassium is a dual winner: the lessens the impacts of salt in your system, and likewise eases stress in her blood vessels. However, diets affluent in potassium may be harmful to individuals with kidney disease, so speak to your doctor before increasing your potassium intake.

It’s straightforward to eat much more potassium — so countless foods are naturally high in potassium. Below are a few:

Note that people respond to salt differently. Some world are salt-sensitive, an interpretation that a higher salt intake boosts their blood pressure. Others room salt-insensitive. They deserve to have a high salt intake and also excrete it in their urine without increasing their blood press (15).

The national Institutes of health and wellness (NIH) recommends reducing salt intake making use of the DASH (Dietary viewpoints to prevent Hypertension) diet (16). The DASH diet emphasizes:

low-fat dairyfishpoultryfewer sweets and also red meats

Most of the extra salt in your diet originates from processed foods and also foods from restaurants, not your salt shaker at house (17). Renowned high-salt items incorporate deli meats, canned soup, pizza, chips, and also other processed snacks.

Foods labeling “low-fat” room usually high in salt and sugar come compensate for the lose of fat. Fat is what provides food taste and also makes you feel full.

Cutting under on — or also better, cutting the end — handle food will help you eat less salt, less sugar, and fewer polished carbohydrates. All of this can result in reduced blood pressure.

Make that a practice to check labels. Follow to the U.S. Food and Drug management (FDA), a sodium listing of 5 percent or much less on a food label is thought about low, if 20 percent or much more is taken into consideration high (17).

Stopping cigarette smoking is good for your all-around health. Smoking reasons an immediate yet temporary rise in her blood press and boost in your heart price (18).

In the long term, the chemistry in tobacco deserve to increase your blood press by damaging your blood ship walls, leading to inflammation, and also narrowing her arteries. The hardened arteries cause higher blood pressure.

The chemistry in tobacco can impact your blood vessels even if you’re roughly secondhand smoke. A study confirmed that children roughly secondhand acting in the house had higher blood pressure than those indigenous nonsmoking houses (19).

We live in stressful times. Workplace and also family demands, national and international politics — they all add to stress. Finding means to mitigate your very own stress is essential for your health and your blood pressure.

There room lots of different ways to properly relieve stress, so find what works for you. Practice deep breathing, take it a walk, check out a book, or clock a comedy.

Listening come music everyday has additionally been presented to minimize systolic blood push (20). A current 20-year study showed that constant sauna usage reduced death from heart-related events (21). And also one small study has shown that acupuncture deserve to lower both systolic and diastolic blood pressure (22).

Mindfulness and also meditation, including transcendental meditation, have actually long been offered — and studied — as methods to alleviate stress. A 2012 examine notes the one university routine in Massachusetts has actually had much more than 19,000 civilization participate in a meditation and mindfulness regime to minimize stress (23).

Yoga, which commonly involves breath control, posture, and meditation techniques, can likewise be reliable in reducing stress and also blood pressure.

A 2013 evaluation on yoga and also blood pressure uncovered an median blood push decrease the 3.62 mm Hg diastolic and 4.17 mm Hg systolic when contrasted to those who didn’t exercise. Research studies of yoga techniques that included breath control, postures, and also meditation were nearly twice as effective as yoga practices that didn’t encompass all three of these aspects (24).

Yes, cacao lovers: Dark coco has been shown to lower blood pressure.

But the dark cacao should it is in 60 to 70 percent cacao. A evaluation of research studies on dark cacao has uncovered that eating one to two squares that dark coco per job may assist lower the threat of heart condition by lowering blood pressure and also inflammation. The benefits space thought come come from the flavonoids present in cacao with much more cocoa solids. The flavonoids assist dilate, or widen, her blood ship (25).

A 2010 research of 14,310 people found that individuals without hypertension who ate much more dark cacao had reduced blood pressure in its entirety than those that ate much less dark coco (26).

Herbal medicines have long been offered in numerous cultures come treat a variety of ailments.

Some herbs have even been displayed to possibly reduced blood pressure. Although, more research is essential to identify the doses and also components in the herbs that are most valuable (27).

Always check with your physician or pharmacist before taking natural supplements. They may interfere through your prescription medications.

Here’s a partial list of plants and herbs the are used by cultures throughout the people to lower blood pressure:

black p (Castanospermum australe)cat’s nippers (Uncaria rhynchophylla)Chinese hawthorn (Crataegus pinnatifida)giant dodder (Cuscuta reflexa)Indian plantago (blond psyllium)maritime jaw bark (Pinus pinaster)river lily (Crinum glaucum)roselle (Hibiscus sabdariffa)sesame oil (Sesamum indicum)tomato extract (Lycopersicon esculentum)umbrella tree bark (Musanga cecropioides)

Your blood pressure commonly dips down as soon as you’re sleeping. If you don’t sleep well, the can influence your blood pressure. World who endure sleep deprivation, especially those who are middle-aged, have actually an increased risk that high blood push (28).

For part people, getting a great night’s sleep no easy. Over there are plenty of ways to help you get restful sleep. Try setting a continuous sleep schedule, spend time relaxing in ~ night, exercise during the day, stop daytime naps, and make your bedroom comfortable (29).

The nationwide Sleep Heart health and wellness Study uncovered that routinely sleeping much less than 7 hours a night and an ext than 9 hours a night was associated with an raised prevalence of hypertension. Consistently sleeping less than 5 hrs a night was connected to a significant risk the hypertension lengthy term (30).

A permanent study finish in 2014 uncovered that human being who ate more protein had a lower risk that high blood pressure. For those that ate an mean of 100 grams that protein per day, there to be a 40 percent lower risk of having high blood push than those on a low-protein diet (33). Those that also included regular fiber into their diet saw as much as a 60 percent palliation of risk.

However, a high-protein diet might not be for everyone. Those with kidney disease may have to use caution, so talk to her doctor.

It’s relatively easy come consume 100 grams of protein daily on most types of diets.

High-protein foods include:

poultry, such together chicken breastcheese, such together cheddar

A 3.5-ounce (oz.) serving of salmon can have as lot as 22 grams (g) that protein, when a 3.5-oz. Offer of chicken breast might contain 30 g the protein.

With regards to vegetarian options, a half-cup offer of most varieties of beans consists of 7 come 10 g that protein. Two tablespoons that peanut butter would provide 8 g (34).

These supplements are readily available and have actually demonstrated promise because that lowering blood pressure:

Omega-3 polyunsaturated fat acid

Adding omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids or fish oil to her diet deserve to have plenty of benefits.

A meta-analysis that fish oil and blood pressure found a median blood pressure reduction in those through high blood pressure of 4.5 mm Hg systolic and 3.0 mm Hg diastolic (35).

Whey protein

This protein complex derived native milk may have several wellness benefits, in enhancement to perhaps lowering blood pressure (36).


Magnesium deficiency is connected to greater blood pressure. A meta-analysis uncovered a tiny reduction in blood press with magnesium supplementation (37).

Coenzyme Q10

In a few small studies, the antioxidant CoQ10 lower systolic blood push by 17 mm Hg and also diastolic approximately 10 mm Hg (38).


Oral L-citrulline is a precursor to L-arginine in the body, a structure block the protein, i m sorry may lower blood press (39).

Caffeine raises her blood pressure, however the impact is temporary. It lasts 45 to 60 minutes and also the reaction different from separation, personal, instance to individual (43).

Some people may be much more sensitive to caffeine than others. If she caffeine-sensitive, you may want come cut ago on her coffee consumption, or shot decaffeinated coffee.

Research on caffeine, consisting of its health and wellness benefits, is in the news a lot. The an option of whether to cut ago depends on numerous individual factors.

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One larger study shown that caffeine’s impact on elevating blood press is better if your blood press is already high. This exact same study, however, referred to as for an ext research on the subject (43).