We often get asked, “How to lower diastolic blood pressure?” You can apply various strategies to lower your overall blood pressure, including blood pressure medications and lifestyle changes. However, you can’t target diastolic blood pressure alone if you have high diastolic hypertension. In that case, you need to work closely with your cardiologist to reduce it. But make sure it doesn’t drop lower than 60 mm Hg. This is because too low diastolic blood pressure can lead to heart damage and may even cause heart disease.
That said, let’s take a look at some practical ways you can lower your blood pressure.
1. Know the difference between normal and high blood pressure
When it comes to controlling high blood pressure, understanding the numbers is the first thing you need to know. There are two blood pressure readings measured in millimeters of mercury (or mm Hg).
The reading on top is systolic blood pressure. This tells the pressure in your blood vessels when the heartbeats. The number present at the bottom is diastolic blood pressure. It measures the pressure in your blood vessels between your heartbeats.
Normal blood pressure is below 120/80 mm Hg. This means the normal systolic reading should be less than 120 mm Hg, while the diastolic reading should be below 80 mm Hg.
Anything above that is considered to be high blood pressure. In severe cases, it can weaken or damage your blood vessels –increasing the risk of blood clots. This, in turn, can cause strokes and heart attacks.
2. Monitor your blood pressure regularly
You should check your blood pressure routinely, record the readings daily over a period and give them to your doctor. Checking blood pressure yourself is now easy, thanks to modern technology. In fact, electronic blood pressure machines are widely available at many pharmacies, and it’s super easy to use them.
3. Get more exercise and reduce stress
Regular exercises can strengthen your heart muscle, which can help it pump with less effort. You will be surprised to know that regular physical activities are often as effective as medications. Some of these exercises include:
Furthermore, stress increases hormones in your blood. This can make your heart beat faster and narrow your blood vessels. Find out ways to reduce your stress. You can try to practice yoga, deep breathing exercises, and meditation. Also, make sure you get plenty of sleep too. If you want to lower your blood pressure but you smoke… now you have one more reason to quit it!
4. Eat more potassium and less sodium
To lower your blood pressure, you need to limit your sodium consumption. This is because a high-sodium diet can make it difficult for your kidneys to remove water from your bloodstream. Excessive liquid presence in your blood can put a lot of strain on your blood pressure –thus increasing your blood pressure.
On the other hand, a high-potassium diet is great if you want to lower your blood pressure. This is because it neutralizes the effects of sodium on the body.
In addition, if you are overweight, make sure you consume a healthy diet, since a healthier diet can help you lose weight, which in turn can reduce blood pressure.
5. Medications for high blood pressure
In addition to lifestyle changes, many people need medications to help control their blood pressure. In fact, medications are pretty effective if you have high blood pressure. But it’s essential to take proper dosage and follow the instructions of your doctor.
If your efforts to lower systolic and diastolic blood pressure are unsuccessful, please feel free to contact Epic Heart and Vascular Center. Our doctor may recommend other strategies and design a treatment plan for your unique health condition and needs.