Having high blood pressure can be a dangerous problem long-term. That’s why it’s important to maintain healthy blood pressure using safe, effective lifestyle changes. This post will discuss how to lower diastolic blood pressure within the context of lowering your blood pressure overall.
What Is Normal Blood Pressure?
Your heart is a powerful muscle that contracts forcefully to pump blood through your circulatory system, delivering oxygen and nutrients to all of your organs. Since it’s a closed system, the heart is responsible for maintaining blood pressure throughout your blood vessels.
In normal, healthy adults, blood pressure readings should be less than 120/80 mmHg. This means that your systolic blood pressure should be below 120 millimeters of mercury. Your diastolic blood pressure should be less than 80 millimeters of mercury.
Doctors consider elevated blood pressure to be below 130/80 mmHg but above 120/80 mmHg. If you do not monitor and control your blood pressure, you are likely to develop hypertension. This is when your blood pressure consistently ranges between 130-139 mmHg systolic and 80-89 mmHg diastolic. Doctors may prescribe medication and lifestyle changes to reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke.
Controlling Diastolic And Systolic Blood Pressure
Your systolic blood pressure is the first number in a blood pressure reading. It shows the blood pressure in your arteries when the heart is beating. The diastolic pressure, on the other hand, is the second number. It shows the blood pressure in your arteries in between heartbeats.
Controlling both numbers is important, and you cannot lower one number or the other alone. Instead, the tips below will help you lower your blood pressure overall, which will benefit your overall health.
How To Lower Diastolic Blood Pressure
- Eat a healthy diet. This means eating a balanced diet rich in vegetables and fruits, healthy fats, and protein. Lean meats, whole grains, fish, cruciferous vegetables, low-fat dairy products, and eggs are good options.
- Limit your sodium intake. High sodium can increase blood pressure. That’s why you should limit your intake to less than 1.5g/day. Monitor your intake by reading food labels and opting to prepare your own food whenever possible.
- Focus on “good” fats. Foods high in trans fats or saturated fats, such as fast food and junk food, can contribute to plaque development in your arteries. Instead, focus on getting more polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats from foods like nuts, olive oil, and avocadoes.
- Start by walking. If you’re not partial to exercising, start small. Walking for just 30 minutes every day has vast benefits for your overall physical and mental health. It can also help you lose weight, which lowers blood pressure overall.
- Stop smoking. Cigarette smoke and tobacco contain toxic chemicals that can contribute to heart disease and hypertension.
- Limit caffeine intake. Caffeine is a stimulant that can contribute to high blood pressure. Avoid caffeine from energy drinks, weight loss pills, and coffee.
- Taking prescription medication. Certain medications can lower your blood pressure if prescribed appropriately by a primary care physician.
Lowering your blood pressure can help you live a healthy and fulfilling life, so it’s important to focus on this aspect of your health. It’s a great idea to work with a doctor while you follow the tips above. This will help you monitor and track your progress, and your doctor will recommend the best treatment options for you.
Aqeeq Internal Medicine offers the best primary care in Houston. We aim to give you personalized, compassionate, high-quality care, and our focus is always to put your health first. If you have any questions or would like to schedule a consultation or diagnosis, please give us a call at (832) 786-8195.