Ways to Lower Your Blood Pressure

Blood pressure measuring.

Do you have high blood pressure? As a general rule of thumb, 120/80 or lower is regarded as a normal, healthy blood pressure. The larger the systolic (top number) and diastolic pressure (bottom number), the more at risk you become for heart disease and stroke. 140/90 is generally regarded as having high blood pressure, also known as hypertension.

The good news is that lifestyle is a major factor in maintaining healthy blood pressure. Try these tips to maintain or work towards that healthy blood pressure.

Regular Exercise

You can see benefits from exercise within a few short weeks. For ideas on exercises, check out our blog here (link to the exercise blog).

It’s been shown that 30 – 60 minutes of moderate cardio a day, 4 or more times a week can lower your blood pressure substantially. Remember to not push yourself beyond what your body can handle. Start out slow, and build to a faster-paced cardio workout.

Weight lifting, or muscle building, can also aid you in getting that ideal blood pressure. Building muscle can boost metabolism, help you burn fat, and contribute to an overall healthy body.  Sometimes because of the intensity, blood pressure can temporality spike from a weight intensive workout. This can be unhealthy for some individuals. Talk to your doctor about an appropriate exercise regime for you.


Try to beef up on some of these foods which have been shown to help reduce blood pressure:

Potassium rich foods:

  • Root Veggies: Sweet potatoes, Potatoes
  • Veggies: Spinach, mushrooms, peas, tomatoes or low Sodium tomato products
  • Beans: Lima beans and white beans
  • Fruit: Bananas, dried fruit (especially prunes, raisons, and dates), oranges, melon, grapefruit, , apricots,
  • Low fat dairy

Cut Out Sodium

Sodium makes your body retain higher amounts of water, thus creating a pressure on your brain, heart, arteries, kidneys, and results in higher blood pressure values.

Processed foods, frozen and canned goods, and deli meats can have huge amounts of sodium. Look at labels and keep track of the Sodium you take in. The average Canadian takes in about double the amount of recommended Sodium.

Reduce Alcohol Consumption and Smoking

These two things are bad for you across the board for almost everything. Although some alcohol (a drink a day or less) can be fine for your health, consider cutting back if you are consuming more than that.

As for smoking, Nicotine has been shown to increase blood pressure almost immediately after smoking a cigarette but up to 10 points!

Reduce Stress

Stress is a huge part of blood pressure. And although we need a bit of stress in our lives, see where it’s coming from and how you can deal with it. A relaxing activity like yoga, chatting with friends, having some alone time, or targeting the source of the stress can help you get to that target blood pressure.

Maintaining healthy blood pressure can not only reduce your risk for heart disease and stroke, but make you feel great! Change isn’t always easy, but with the help of loved ones and good information, you can be on your way to better health.