What are non-pharmacologic treatment options for hypertension?
Blood pressure is one of the most dangerous and difficult to treat ailments that can affect the overall health of an individual by making him prone to more widespread systemic damage to other organs like kidney and brain. It is very important to keep blood pressure within reference range or near normal ranges by antihypertensive medications; however if blood pressure is just mildly elevated, it can be controlled by simple modifications without needing heavy medications.
Advantages of medications over lifestyle modifications:
Practically many different kinds of oral and injectable medicine have been devised for treatment of the hypertension. However every medicine of this kind has certain side effects on the body. It is due to the adverse consequences of the medicines of hypertension that their use has been much restricted. Moreover in spite of regular use of these medicines, most of the patients do not find any improvement in the problem regarding the control of hypertension. Presently high blood is among those disorders which are poorly controlled, in spite of so much research and devising different medicines.
Controlling Hypertension through non-pharmacological Ways :
After studying the effects of medicines in controlling the problem of hypertension and the failure of most of the medications in doing so, now there has been a paradigm shift both for doctors as well as patients and new methods of controlling high blood pressure are under way to get one’s blood pressure controlled. Now most of the physicians recommend their patients that they should change their life style and eating habits if they want to effectively control their high blood pressure. This method has many advantages and no side effects at all. In turn adopting a healthy life style will help out the patients in curbing many other problems as well. Some common and most recommended ways of controlling high blood pressure are as follows:
Reducing sodium intake
Presence of high concentration sodium in blood is the major cause of increasing blood pressure. All those foods containing sodium in high amounts should be reduced in diet. For example the most important and abundant source of sodium is the table salt. It supplies a lot of sodium in blood. Therefore maintaining the sodium intake and cutting short its supply to the body is very important because it is the major cause of hypertension.
- Apart from table salt, certain sea foods (oysters and some deep water fishes) are also rich sources of sodium that must be avoided.
- It is highly recommended to avoid sprinkling additional salt over cooked food (also called added salt intake)
- Doing exercise
Exercise is very important for maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Regular exercise will help you maintain the body fats and will not let your cholesterol levels to increase which is the major cause of high blood pressure. In addition to this it also keeps the blood flow maintained and helps in controlling body weight.
Controlling Alcohol Intake
Alcohol contains such ingredients which automatically increase the osmotic potential of body fluids raising them and causing the high blood pressure. In addition to this it also increases the work of heart causing it to do more laborious work than its potential. Therefore consuming alcohol should be cut down immediately by patients who have high blood pressure.
These are recommended for all hypertensive patients whether they are taking medications or not. However, if blood pressure is not maintained by these modifications, start taking anti-hypertensive medications to avoid future complications and damage to organs which are then very difficult to reverse.