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Easy Ways to Lower Blood Pressure and Promote Heart Health

Updated: Jan 2, 2023

What are some easy things you can incorporate into your daily routine to care for your heart? Some of the easiest ways will surprise you!




Not everyone can make large changes all at once to work toward heart health, and you really shouldn't have to. How can you get started? The following lifestyle changes you can make are simple, enhance your own self-care and are evidence-based techniques to get you started.


#1 - Take a Hot Bath or Sauna/Steam Room Bath Daily

Exposing your body to higher temperatures relaxes the body in more ways than one.


When you are submerged in a nice, hot bath or sit in a sauna or steam room for 15 minutes daily, the heat causes the blood vessels of the body to dilate, or get bigger in diameter, which lowers blood pressure and takes stress off the heart. A relaxing soak or sauna will also reduce stress, giving you an overall sense of well-being and stressing your heart less. According to a Japanese study, people who had a 15–20-minute bath had a 28% lower risk of heart disease and 26% lower risk of stroke than their counterparts who bathed less than twice per week.


Studies in Norway have shown that regular sauna or steam room usage reduces the risk of mortality associated with cardiac disease, lowers blood pressure and reduces risk of stroke.


In the Lincoln and Omaha, Nebraska areas, there are gyms with affordable pricing that have saunas and steam rooms. Take a 15-minute session after a walk on the treadmill or after an aerobic class and let the heat enhance your muscle recovery as well. The exercise and sauna session will enhance the effects of both on your heart!



#2 - Stretch

Flexibility enhances your cardiovascular system.


A regular stretching routine can improve blood flow and reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke. Stretching your muscles is thought to decrease stiffness and damage to arterial walls, the high-pressure blood vessels that carry oxygenated blood from your heart to the rest of the body.


Studies show that 12 weeks of passive stretching exercises for 40 minutes 5 days per week can improve vascular function significantly, even in arteries in areas of the body that are not stretched. Further, after study subjects stopped stretching, their vasculature function went back to baseline. They lost all the benefit they gained, so their risks went back up to the pre-stretching routine levels.



#3 - Filter Your Coffee

Start your day off right!


While it's true that coffee can improve heart health, it turns out it needs to be brewed the right way. In a Norwegian study, people who drank filtered coffee were 15% less likely to die from heart disease or stroke.


In the study, people who drank 1-4 cups per day of filtered coffee had the lowest risk of death from heart-related conditions. Unfiltered coffee, like espresso drinks or brews from a French press or percolator, had a higher risk of dying from heart disease. It is thought that unfiltered coffee retains high levels of oils in coffee that can raise cholesterol levels.


#4 - Practice Tai Chi

Tai chi is an ancient Chinese tradition that, today, is practiced as a graceful form of exercise.


Often described as meditation in motion, tai chi promotes serenity through gentle, flowing movements. It involves a series of postures performed in a slow, focused manner and accompanied by deep breathing.


According to the Mayo Clinic, practicing Tai Chi not only reduces risk of cardiac disease and stroke, it uses multiple ways to attack cardiac disease. Tai Chi can help reduce stress hormone cortisol so you can lower your blood pressure. Tai Chi also enhances aerobic capacity and helps to improve the symptoms of congestive heart failure. Tai Chi can make you sleep better at night, thus contributing to better heart health.


That's Not So Hard, Is It?

Once you commit to one or two simple steps, it's easier to take another, then another.


Once you take one or two baby steps to bettering your heart health, you'll feel empowered to take another. And another. We hope that you find some value in these easy self-care-oriented beginner steps toward better heart health.


It's time to prioritize YOU!


For more information on healthy living or to start out on the first steps of integrating a successful, healthy lifestyle, visit one of our health providers at Louisville Medical Center with an affordable consultation. We would be more than happy to be invited to partner with you on your healthcare journey. Call 402-234-5049 to set up a consultation today.

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