“Why is high blood pres­sure so bad?”

Sunday Mail - Body and Soul - - B+S NATURAL SOLUTIONS -

ques­tion: I have been told I have high blood pres­sure. Is it that bad and are there any nat­u­ral ways I can lower it? an­swer: High blood pres­sure or hy­per­ten­sion is a symp­tom rather than a disease. But it is a symp­tom that must be treated. If you have hy­per­ten­sion you are four times more likely to de­velop heart disease.

High blood pres­sure of­ten has no symp­toms, how­ever the reper­cus­sions are se­ri­ous so it’s best to at least know you have it. Some peo­ple do no­tice symp­toms such as headaches, red­den­ing face, buzzing or noise in the ears, nose bleeds, fa­tigue and con­fu­sion.

We now eat 10 times more sodium than our hunter-gath­erer an­ces­tors. Sodium has an os­motic ef­fect on the body, draw­ing out water and in­creas­ing blood pres­sure. Sodium is part of the mol­e­cule sodium chlo­ride, bet­ter known as salt, which is added to pro­cessed food to en­hance taste and as a preser­va­tive.

The best way to lower your salt in­take is not by choos­ing “low-salt”, pro­cessed foods, but by ditch­ing pro­cessed foods al­to­gether. Potas­sium reg­u­lates sodium lev­els. We should be eat­ing twice the amount of potas­sium as we do sodium. How­ever, we eat four times less potas­sium than our an­ces­tors.

Potas­sium-rich foods in­clude bananas, cit­rus fruit, apri­cots, av­o­cado, pars­ley, pota­toes, al­monds, cashews, pecans, sun­flower seeds, sesame seeds, sar­dines, kelp and kid­ney beans.

Herbs which can be use­ful in low­er­ing blood pres­sure in­clude Coleus forskohlii, va­le­rian, olive leaf and hawthorn.

Los­ing any ex­tra kilo­grams also helps shift blood pres­sure read­ings in the right di­rec­tion.

Stress hor­mones are an­other fac­tor that in­crease blood pres­sure and many stud­ies have shown that med­i­ta­tion low­ers stress hor­mones.

High blood pres­sure usu­ally re­sponds to a change in diet and life­style. How­ever, if you still have high blood pres­sure af­ter mak­ing th­ese changes, take med­i­ca­tion from your doc­tor, know­ing you have done all you can nat­u­rally. bodyand­soul.com.au For more of Mim Beim’s natur­opa­thy tips visit bodyand­soul.com. au/heal­ing

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