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By Jan Oliver
With the known side effects of pharmaceutical drugs, more people are looking for natural cures for high blood pressure. If you have been diagnosed with high blood pressure you may need to take prescribed medication to correct the problem.
There are several medications that are used to reduce blood pressure. Each of these medications may have adverse side effects and should only be used under a doctor’s care. Diuretics flush the body of salts. Unfortunately, this may deplete your body of potassium and other minerals valuable in maintaining a healthy heart. Some diuretics interfere with uric acid excretion, causing or exacerbating gout and arthritis. Some diuretics increase cholesterol and others can cause sexual impotency as a side effect.
Sympathetic nerve inhibitors or alpha-blockers interfere with the message sent by the sympathetic nervous system and cause the vessels to contract thereby reducing the blood pressure. Alpha-blockers create swelling of extremities, chest pain, nausea, weight gain, vomiting, loss of bladder control, continuous and painful erections or impotence, joint and back pain, insomnia, stuffy nose, blurred vision and restlessness.
Calcium-channel blockers, another treatment for hypertension, make the arteries expand and allow the blood to flow more easily by slowing the rate that calcium enters both the heart and vessels. Some side effects of calcium-channel blocker are exhaustion, flushing, increased swelling in the feet, abdomen or ankles, heartburn, stomach upsets, difficulty swallowing, numbness, fainting, headaches, constipation, jaundice and chest pains. If you take a calcium channel-blocker, make sure that you don’t smoke and reveal all medications you are taking, including herbal supplements, to your doctor. Mixing several drugs or smoking while taking hypertension medication can create other problems like tachycardia – rapid heartbeats.
Beta-blockers reduce the rate and decrease the force of the heart’s contraction. Sexual impotency in men is one of the most common side effects. Fatigue, depression, nightmares and increased wheezing in asthmatics are other side effects of beta-blockers. Many people with high blood pressure often stop taking their medication to avoid these side effects. This is extremely dangerous. If you choose to implement alternative methods of control, work with your doctor to wean you from the drugs and monitor your progress as your pressure begins to drop naturally.
The first natural cure for high blood pressure is increased physical activity. The activity should be something that you enjoy and should also increase the heart rate and help you to lose weight. This natural cure improves the blood pressure several ways. It increases your overall health and stamina. It reduces stress by releasing the ‘fight or flight’ hormones accumulated in your system from daily stress, and promotes weight reduction.
The second natural cure involves monitoring your diet on a daily basis. Some foods reduce cholesterol, a prime cause of artery blockage and increased blood pressure. Eliminate caffeine and nicotine, from your life. Reduce the intake of salt and increase natural fibers like those in whole grain foods, fruits and vegetables.
The third way to reduce hypertension is the use of herbal remedies and supplements. Increase your intake of calcium, vitamin C, CoQ10 and Flaxseed. Herbs that lower blood pressure include coleus forskohlii, hawthorn and mistletoe. Always speak with your doctor before starting a regimen of herb supplements.
Pharmaceutical drugs don’t have to be the only option in fighting hypertension. These are three natural cures for high blood pressure you can adopt that will help you live a longer and better life.
About the Author: Jan Oliver is an academic, writer and researcher in natural health. See more of her work at
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