There are a number of natural choices you have in reducing your blood pressure. First of all, you need to consider how healthy you are in terms of your weight and exercise. If you know they are an issue, you need to address them first. Next you need to look at your diet. Diet can play a big role in helping to control the blood pressure. A study published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that people on a Paleolithic diet were able to lower their blood pressure. A Paleolithic diet is one in which you eat foods that were found in the Paleolithic Era or Cave Man Era prior to agriculture and animal husbandry. Foods you can eat include meat, fish, shellfish, eggs, tree nuts, vegetables, roots, fruit, berries, mushrooms, etc. Foods you can’t eat on this diet include grains, dairy, beans/legumes, potatoes, sugar and fake foods. Another study published in the journal Hypertension, showed that blood pressure was lowered even more with exercise and caloric restriction.
There are also supplements that have been found to have a positive impact on blood pressure. Supplementation with acetyl-L-carnitine can help reduce blood pressure and improve insulin resistance. In a study published in 2009 in the journal Hypertension showed that supplementation with acetyl-L-carnitine at 1g twice a day reduced arterial hypertension, insulin resistance, and impaired glucose tolerance. Another study published in 2007 in the Journal of Clinical Hypertension showed that supplementation with acetyl-L-carnitine and alpha-Lipoic acid decreased the blood pressure of people with documented coronary artery disease. Along those same lines, Co-Q10 supplementation has also been shown to decrease blood pressure. A study published in the Journal of Human Hypertension suggests that Co-Q10 can decrease blood pressure by decrease oxidative stress and insulin response.
Another thing you want to investigate if you have hypertension is if you have vitamin D deficiency. It is hypothesized that up to 90% of the population can have some degree of vitamin D deficiency. Vitamin D deficiency can cause elevated calcium levels which can result in high blood pressure. Correction of vitamin D levels can reduce blood pressure as well as antihypertensive medication. A note of caution: do not take vitamin D with hydrochlorothiazide unless your doctor is closely monitoring your serum calcium levels.
Chiropractic treatment can also help lower blood pressure. For over 40 years, it has been known that there is a relationship between high blood pressure and the presence of circulatory abnormalities around the first vertebrae in your neck (known as the atlas) and the back of the brain. Minor misalignment of the atlas vertebrae can cause relative ischemia of the brainstem circulation that can result in an increase in blood pressure. Misalignment of the atlas vertebrae can also potentially injure, impair, compress, and compromise the brainstem neural pathways which can affect on your blood pressure. Correction of an atlas misalignment has been found to reduce arterial pressure and restore the normal brainstem neural pathways. In fact, as I noted in my previous blog post, a study published in the Journal of Human Hypertension in 2007 showed that correction of dysfunction in the upper cervical spine by chiropractic spinal manipulation causes “marked and sustained reductions in blood pressure similar to the use of two-drug combination therapy.” (Bakris G, Dickholtz M Sr, Meyer PM, Kravitz G, Avery E, Miller M, Brown J, Woodfield C, Bell B. Atlas vertebra realignment and achievement of arterial pressure goal in hypertensive patients: a pilot study. J Hum Hypertens. 2007 May;21(5):347-52)