Reducing blood pressure helps ensure that people do not suffer any of the devastating side effects that can occur when it gets too high. Hypertension, as high blood pressure is often called, is responsible for an increased risk of kidney disease, heart attack, vision problems, heart failure, stroke and many other life threatening health conditions. Unfortunately, many people either do not take these threats seriously or they have found that the medications their doctor prescribed came with side effects that make them feel worse.
Medication is not the only solution
As part of a treatment plan for high blood pressure, the physician often emphasizes to the patient how important their lifestyle choices are to their health. Things such as exercising and eating a diet that focuses on eating more fruits and vegetables and less meats and dairy products can go a long way toward reducing high blood pressure. In addition to the DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) diet, formulated at the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLB), a part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), people who suffer from high blood pressure can add other measures at home that are designed to help lower their blood pressure.
7 Herbs that can help
The following seven herbs, many of them popular and already in use in kitchens around the world, can help reduce blood pressure and the need for medications.
- Garlic: A study at the Clinical Research Center of New Orleans found that allicin, a substance in garlic, helped nine research subjects with severe incidences of hypertension experience its reduction.
- Onions: A Journal of Nutrition study found that the antioxidant flavonol, quercetin, caused subjects to experience a reduction of both their diastolic and systolic pressures compared with subjects who only took a placebo.
- Cinnamon: This herb has many health properties, including lowering blood pressure and fighting diabetes. Research subjects who ingested a water soluble form of cinnamon had an increase in the antioxidants that lower blood sugar levels.
- Oregano: An animal subject study found that a compound found in oregano, carvacrol, reduced arterial pressure, diastolic and systolic pressures and the heart rate.
- Cardamom: After taking this herb for only three months, 20 people who were recently diagnosed with severe hypertension saw their blood pressure levels significantly reduced.
- Olives: Olive oil, a staple in the Mediterranean diet, has been shown to reduce blood pressure, making people who live in that area some of the world’s healthiest.
- Hawthorn: When 79 people with Type 2 diabetes took 1200mg of hawthorn extract for sixteen weeks, their mean diastolic pressure was reduced.
The above herbs are proof that just because a diet change is necessary for good health, it does not mean that the diet must be bland. Generous use of some of the most popular herbs can lead to better health.