Doing some simple exercises can help reduce our high blood pressure. That finding, from a review by researchers at the American Heart Association of more than 1,000 scientific studies published between 2006 and 2011, may surprise some people. What simple exercises are they talking about and how effective are they to reduce hypertension?
The experts, including epidemiologists and cardiologists, analyzed three types of therapies as alternative treatments to prescription drugs:
1.behavioral therapies such as meditation,
2.non-invasive procedures that include acupuncture and slow deep breathing, and
3.Three types of exercise: walking, resistance or weight training and manual grip exercises.
The findings, published in the journal Hypertension, recorded the three types of therapies to reduce hypertension. However, some were more effective than others to reduce our high blood pressure.
Isometric manual grip exercises: such as those used by golfers to develop wrist and forearm strength, they reduced high blood pressure by 10 percent after four weeks of exercising for 15 minutes a day, five days a week. This type of exercise can be done in many ways. For example:pressing their hands together in a prayer position and pushing firmly and counting to ten, then resting for ten seconds and repeating this cycle four more times; or
holding a stress ball in the palm of your hand, squeeze firmly, hold for ten seconds and then release. Repeat four times a day; or
using an isometric hand exerciser. This is like pliers but with a spring in the middle, so that with each squeeze you use the muscles of your hand.
Slow and deep breathing: slow deep breathing was effective in reducing our high blood pressure when it was performed for 15 minutes three or four times a week. There was no solid evidence that acupuncture worked.
Walking: it was discovered that walking is the best form of exercise, with the greatest reductions in hypertension when it is intense and frequent. Half an hour of moderate or high intensity walking each day will help reduce our high blood pressure. The benefit of this form of exercise lasts almost 24 hours.
The novelty of this research is the effectiveness of some simple forms of exercise. While they can help reduce hypertension, these exercises should not rely on themselves to lower high blood pressure.
Less health risks
All medications prescribed to reduce hypertension carry a degree of risk of the patient suffering from side effects. In a small number of cases, these side effects can be serious. These alternative approaches posed fewer health risks and side effects than prescription drugs.
Control high blood pressure with a healthy lifestyle.
There is a problem with studies such as the one mentioned above that we as hypertensive should take into account. That is, research only analyzes one specific aspect or aspects of a problem. On their own, alternative treatments investigated by researchers are not as effective as some prescription medications. However, they often make prescription drugs more effective. The research also failed to take into account the beneficial effects of lifestyle choices, such as:
-Have a healthy and balanced diet that is low in sodium and contains at least five different fruits and vegetables each day
-Losing excess weight
-Low alcohol consumption, and
-Avoiding the use of tobacco products
If you are serious about reducing your hypertension to normal levels, the best approach is to follow a healthy and more active lifestyle.