High Blood Pressure

I was recently diagnosed with high blood pressure that is not responding to the 2 medications that I'm currently taking. I would love suggestions for getting off these medications and having a healthier lifestyle way of controlling it.


  • fatty2begone
    fatty2begone Posts: 223 Member
    I have had luck with reducing caffeine intake. I drink half caf in the morning and decaf for afternoon treat. I also take garlic supplements. I know regular exercise and taking off weight also helps.

    To be clear I was borderline so not sure if the above mentioned will help you. I would discuss other options with your doctor. I would think they are your best source of information
  • jtechmart
    jtechmart Posts: 65 Member
    The most effective thing I've ever used for reducing blood pressure is regular cardio. If you are healthy enough, you should see a reduction of your blood pressure if you get good sessions in every week. Not sure about walking, but anything with increased heart rate seems to work. But, even walking probably works.

    It won't matter much if you just do it once, then not again for a week or two. But, if your doing regular 3x per week cardio, you should see a reduction. You can use high BP as motivation to get a regular exercise program going. Set lower blood pressure as a goal.

    If you add cutting to the cardio, you can probably reduce it even further. Just be sure you are healthy to do this. Check with your Doctor as to what you can and can't do.
  • littlegreenparrot1
    littlegreenparrot1 Posts: 603 Member
    I had a lot of problems with high blood pressure when in my 20s, and researched a lot to try and stay off meds. I found the British Blood pressure association website very helpful.

    What it essentially boiled down to is more fruit and veg is good - at least 5 portions, ideally 7-10 a day. This was 20 odd years ago, but I still find I do best when eating mostly plant based.
    Following their recommendations worked for me at the time, and since then havn't had an issue.
    Still find I do best when eating mostly plant based.
    It certainly wouldn't do any harm and of course can help towards weight loss.
  • nooshi713
    nooshi713 Posts: 4,839 Member
    edited February 14
    How long have you been on the medications since you said you were recently diagnosed? They don’t work overnight. Give it several weeks to see if they are working. There are some things you can do to possible improve it and get off meds including quitting smoking if you do, reducing caffeine if you drink to excess, reducing alcohol, reducing stress, losing weight if you are overweight, and increasing cardio. It depends on the cause though. Some cases of high blood pressure can not be controlled with lifestyle changes, so talk to your doctor and do not stop taking medication on your own.
  • cwolfman13
    cwolfman13 Posts: 40,889 Member
    I'm hypertensive and on meds. In my case, much of it is hereditary but I'm able to control it with meds and living a healthy lifestyle. For me, healthy lifestyle isn't enough to ditch the meds...and also, meds alone don't resolve the issue. For me that means:

    1 - Regular cardiovascular exercise. I typically cycle or mountain bike 4-5 days per week. I also go out for walks at least a few days per week and having an office job, I make sure I get up every hour to move around a bit. Regular cardiovascular exercise is probably the number one addition to my meds that keeps my hypertension under control.

    2 - May or may not apply to you...but reduction of alcohol consumption. When COVID hit, I became a pretty heavy nightly drinker and alcohol became my primary form of "entertainment". It also negatively impacted getting in regular exercise as I was either too hungover or brain fogged or didn't feel like going for a ride or walk after working hours and was just ready to sit down with my booze. My blood pressure went through the roof. At it's peak I was regularly hitting 180/110 despite my meds. I cut way, way, way back starting this past January and my BP dropped tremendously and continues to improve with that and getting back into the exercise groove.

    3 - Healthy diet and losing weight. If you're overweight, just simply losing weight can have a pretty dramatic affect on your BP. Diet wise, I have my indulgences, but for the most part I cook at home using scratch or minimally processed ingredients. I eat a pretty high fiber diet of oats and other whole grains, lentils, legumes, lots of veg and a couple servings of fruit daily. I eat fish 3x or more per week usually and generally keep my proteins lean...mostly chicken (tons of different ways to cook) and fish. Lean cuts of beef or pork once or twice per week usually. Lots of healthy fats from things like nuts, avocados, and good cooking oils...I primarily use avocado oil for high heat applications and extra virgin olive oil for everything else. I do cook with butte occasionally...specifically when it really can make or break something...but in general, I keep my saturated fat consumption at or below the RDA daily maximum...usually well below.
  • emmamcgarity
    emmamcgarity Posts: 1,577 Member
    My sister was diagnosed a few years back and had good luck on the DASH diet recommended by her doctor. She also started walking regularly. She has noticed that when she focuses on DASH her blood pressure readings are better. When she starts eating less potassium rich vegetables and more junk/fast food, her BP starts spiking again. I hope you find something that works well for you.
  • I2k4
    I2k4 Posts: 176 Member
    edited February 15
    I was first diagnosed in 1994 during an appointment for something else (after running up three flights of stairs), There's no family or personal history of related issues, knock on wood. Have read high on every medical appointment in decades since, despite maintaining regular exercise and a healthy diet, with no symptoms and no meds except Aspirin and a few ordinary vitamin supplements. I'm one of those people put into a state of acute psychic distress by the proximity of white coats, so my caution / advice is to be sure there is a real problem if otherwise feeling okay.
  • Vune
    Vune Posts: 664 Member
    First thing is to always defer to your own medical team and their treatments and recommendations.

    That aside, my blood pressure is sensitive to stress, salty goodness, and weight fluctuations at relatively lower body weights (as in, my BP starts rising at the high end of my "normal" BMI range. Small things like taking walks and loading up on veggies can really help keep things in control if you're consistent. If you're not there yet, these things can help you get there.
  • kshama2001
    kshama2001 Posts: 25,626 Member
    If you need to lose weight, that's the place to start.

    If you're not already engaging in regular cardio and consumption of vegetables, do that too.
  • ReenieHJ
    ReenieHJ Posts: 9,511 Member
    I operated an in-home daycare for almost 40 years. It can be a super stressful job but my BP always ran fine. After I retired my BP went up. I truly believe it was because of how active daycare kept me. So I'd say become much more active, walking a lot is great, as are most exercises. Reduce your weight if that is an issue. Focus on healthy foods.
    If you have HBP due to genetic make-up you may need to be on medication no matter what. I'm sure the doctor is the best person to ask for advice with your own personal well-being.
    Good luck!!
  • Hollis100
    Hollis100 Posts: 1,410 Member
    edited March 9
    slaclark22 wrote: »
    I was recently diagnosed with high blood pressure that is not responding to the 2 medications that I'm currently taking. I would love suggestions for getting off these medications and having a healthier lifestyle way of controlling it.

    (1) Reduce sodium. This is huge for me - I went from 185/90 to 128/77 in two weeks from food alone, no meds.

    Sodium is in almost everything in a store or restaurant except raw fruit, vegetables, nuts, and a few other things. Read labels. If you eat out, check the place's website for nutrition info before you go. Keep your sodium at or below 1500 per day (I'm aiming for well below 1000). Buy the DASH seasoning and put it on your food instead of salad dressings, butter, etc. with sodium. They make at least 2 kinds you can shake on like a salt or pepper shaker and are easy to carry with you.

    (2) Drink water.

    (3) Limit or cut out caffeine, which temporarily raises BP. I love a hot beverage and am trying to convince myself to drink herb tea or green tea without caffeine.

    (4) Eat food with potassium like green leafy vegetables.

    (5) Lose weight and exercise, especially cardio.

    Good luck to you!
  • snowflake954
    snowflake954 Posts: 7,496 Member
    My BIL is a cardiologist. He always says--cut the salt and lose weight. The other things mentioned all enter into the picture, of course.
  • Hollis100
    Hollis100 Posts: 1,410 Member
    edited March 9
    Beets are also supposed to lower high blood pressure, per Harvard Health, WebMD, and many other sources. Ugh to the taste -- they taste like dirt, but whatever. Beet juice is supposed to be more effective than eating beets. I bought both this morning and will give it a try.
  • Hollis100
    Hollis100 Posts: 1,410 Member
    slaclark22 wrote: »
    I was recently diagnosed with high blood pressure that is not responding to the 2 medications that I'm currently taking. I would love suggestions for getting off these medications and having a healthier lifestyle way of controlling it.

    Okay, here's my report on beet juice for high blood pressure. I was skeptical, but to my surprise I give it a thumbs up after two days.

    The important part: I drank two cups in the morning and checked my blood pressure at night, many hours later: 118/73. This is huge for me. I'm not taking blood pressure meds, but my doctor's office wants me to go on them.

    Taste: It tastes okay, not a Starbucks Frappuccino, but it's fine.

    It comes in quart bottles (or 4 cups). I did some research on health and medical sites. The instructions said drink 1-2 cups a day, which would have the maximum effect on blood pressure about 2-3 hours later, but would still have an effect 24 hours later. I found this to be true.

    I bought the beet juice at my local grocery store. They sell two brands in the natural foods/organic section. Both products said the juice was mostly beets, with some organic lemon juice added as a preservative.

    You could also buy and juice beets, but I'm a horrible non-cook and can't see myself doing this.

    Definitely worth a try and it has no bad side effects.
  • fatty2begone
    fatty2begone Posts: 223 Member
    Interesting and thanks for posting your personal results. I have read that beet juice was very popular with athletes too for superior performance and endurance. Is this the new super food?
  • cianag
    cianag Posts: 29 Member
    I didn't know you could buy beet juice. I bought some powdered beet drink. I only drink it once a week. I will try more often. I would love to get off my BP meds.
  • HoneyBadger302
    HoneyBadger302 Posts: 1,680 Member
    Only sharing my experience so far:

    To start, I'm NOT on any meds (probably would have been if I had gone in to a doctor) - I found out my BP was climbing pretty high when I went in to donate plasma one day and couldn't due to being too high....I asked what that was, and was shocked to say the least.

    For me, most of my issues stem from stress, so I knew I needed to start managing that, among other things.

    I have focused on:

    1) Taking a high quality Omega-3 (this is proven to have just as good an effect as other lifestyle changes, so I consider it pretty important and do spend some money on a high quality supplement)

    2) Exercise and diet - losing some weight, getting back into a workout routine despite my schedule. Honestly I focus more on lifting than cardio (although I have a part time job 90-120 minutes each day that is steady manual labor at a barn)

    3) Cooking more fresh meals and reducing sodium compared to prepared meals

    4) Daily actions to help reduce my stress (in my case, this comes out in a daily critical task list) which has significantly reduced my stress levels overall.

    I started these things in late December. At that time, my BP was scary high and erratic - some days crazy high. Since then, it has stabilized, and while I still have a ways to go to be "normal" it is a long ways from those scary high readings I was getting at that time, and outside of when I've gotten sick, it has been far more stable and steadily lowering back to what has always been normal for me...not there yet, but it's been a slow but steady drop, and I'm not anywhere near as freaked out since these changes are clearly working and there has been a significant drop.