Breathe Your Way To Lower Blood Pressure 2017-05-25T14:09:07+00:00

Breathe Your Way To Lower Blood Pressure

breatheDeep breathing is also known as diaphragmatic breathing or  abdominal breathing.

Learning how to control your breathing in stressful situations could reduce your blood pressure by as much as 20 mmHg.

To breath correctly:

When you breath deeply, the air will enter through your nose, fully fill up your lungs and your lower belly will rise. This may seem unnatural since in our society it is considered unattractive to extend your stomach. This can lead to people holding their stomach muscles in, which interferes with deep breathing. Holding in your stomach muscles cause you to make shallow chest breaths, which increases tension and anxiety factors which can effect your high blood pressure.

How deep breathing lowers blood pressure?

breathingDeep slow breaths improve blood flow in the smaller blood vessels and decrease peripheral resistance, which helps to regulate the heart rate. When you breathe properly, your body takes in the correct amount of oxygen and disposes of the carbon dioxide. This leads to a reduction in blood pressure by slowing down the heartbeat and stabilizing your blood pressure.

These breathing exercises can help you to control your blood pressure to a certain degree without the need for invasive treatments or blood pressure drugs.

How to practice abdominal breathing

Follow these four steps.

  1. Take a breath from your belly (not shoulders!) while counting slowly to four.
  2. Stop for a count of two and then release your breath slowly on a count of four again.
  3. Stop for a second before you take another breath. Make sure the breath is always from the belly, never from the neck or shoulders.
  4. Repeat.

Studies show that this breathing method can lower the numbers by as much as 20 points. But to get that effect you must do the technique perfectly. Check the following points.

  • Scan your body for any tension. Your blood vessel tone parallels your muscle tone. Although you cannot feel your blood vessels you can feel your muscles and sense any tension in them.
  • Check your shoulders. Are they riding high? Can you drop them?
  • Check your back. Is there any tension there?
  • Check your neck, arms, feet and spine, part by part very slowly. 
  • Take time. Fast pace will make you more anxious and raise the blood pressure. Only slow pace will make this exercise worthwhile. If you find any tension anywhere, stop and let the tension melt into your breath.
  • Aim for about 6 breaths per minute.

Your job is to bring your breath to its natural and effortless slow within just minutes. You should feel comfortable and your breath should not feel artificial. If you did the exercise right you should notice a significant drop in your numbers right away. If you do not, try again. Make sure that this time you are really slowing down and relaxing all the muscles. Although this task may feel difficult and cumbersome at first mastering your nervous system is of vital importance to your well-being.

This information was taken from Drdnaturopath.

Alternate nose breathing lowers blood pressure

Another effective way to breath is called alternate nose breathing. Research in Nepal Medical Journal found that inhaling through alternate nostrils on an empty stomach every morning, lowered diastolic blood pressure, pulse and respiratory rates.

 

What you should know

Breathing techniques are effective at quickly bringing down your blood pressure, but need to be done on a regular basis throughout the day or in high stress situations to be effective.

If done properly they do work, and are great to do just before going in to see your doctor for a high blood pressure reading to avoid white coat syndrome.

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