In the last couple of months we’ve published a lot of short articles about reliable studies testing natural ingredients and their effects to lower blood pressure.
In today’s feature articles, we’re going to revisit some of the most powerful and simple methods we’ve discovered.
We’ll also go into a little more detail about each method than we did in the original articles and attempt to answer some of the questions that came up in the comment section (we may not always respond to comments but rest assured, we read every single one carefully and use the feedback we get to try to improve future articles).
I’ll also add more of my personal opinions and comments to this article. Oftentimes, we publish the study results and the facts and leave the judgments to our readers. Today’ I’ll hold nothing back.
So please read on here and then make your comment at the end…
Note: you can find our entire library of previously published articles on high blood pressure here.
Now lets jump into the 10 new blood pressure fixes that new research supports:
A study conducted by the University of Connecticut revealed that people who added grapes into their diet lowered their blood pressure and cholesterol levels, and improved type 2 diabetes.
This study included people who had Metabolic Syndrome, a condition that almost always includes high blood pressure. They simply asked the people to include grapes in their diet but did not give detailed orders on how much.
Grapes act as natural vasodilators, i.e., they help widen the arteries and relax the smooth muscles around the body.
When we first published this article on our website, many readers rightfully pointed out that grapes are often heavy with pesticide. So, for best results you should always choose organic.
Another question that we got a lot was about people suffering type 2 diabetes, since grapes are very sweet.
A cup of grapes includes 23 grams of natural fruit sugar. This sugar, however, reacts differently in the body than white sugar does; especially when eaten as a whole food, since grapes include fiber as well.
So if you’re diabetic, it won’t hurt you at all to eat a handful of grapes daily or a few times a week. Since grapes also have anti-inflammatory effects, they also have healing effects in the pancreas for diabetics as the study revealed.
Blueberries are even more powerful than grapes for both high blood pressure and diabetes and they include less sugar and more fiber. So, I’d actually recommend to choose blueberries over grapes.
Alternatively, you can also choose grape juice or even a glass of wine (made of grapes). This, is however, not recommended if you have diabetes or are fighting obesity, since you lose the fiber from eating the grapes.
Recently, study findings from the Louisville Metabolic and Atherosclerosis Research Center had participants replace in-between meals (three times a day) with raisins. And in a few weeks, their blood pressure dropped drastically.
Raisins are, in essence, dried grapes so it’s no surprise they have many of the positive effects that grapes do.
However, this study finding doesn’t recommend that you add raisins to your diet. It only shows that if you tend to eat unhealthy snacks between meals (such as candy), replacing them with healthier snacks such as raisins (even if they have the same calorie count) can help you lower blood pressure and probably have more health benefits.
Half a cup of raisins includes about the same amount of calories as one candy bar (250 calories) but also has a lot of fiber and the sugars are not processed.
The better alternative for people fighting obesity or type 2 diabetes would be to replace the snack with really healthy, low sugar things like celery and carrots.
Vitamin C Lowers Blood Pressure
Eating five times the recommended daily dose of vitamin C – 500 grams instead of 100 grams – lowers blood pressure 5 points on the average. This conclusion is the result of new research done by Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, analyzing 29 comprehensive, previously published studies.
It doesn’t hurt to take the vitamin C in a pill form but as always, getting your nutrition from whole food is the best way to go. Since fruits are often the type of food that include the most vitamin C, and fruits are high in sugar, it’s much better for those who’re fighting obesity or type 2 diabetes to eat the whole food rather than fruit juice since the fiber in the whole food balance the sugar intake.
Vitamin C can be found in high doses in many fruits and vegetables including: Black Currants, Breadfruit, Grapefruit, Guava, Kiwi, Lychee, Mango, Mulberries, Orange, Papaya, Passionfruit, Pineapple, Strawberries, Amaranth Leaves, Bok Choy, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Butternut Squash, Green Pepper, Kale, Swiss Chard
Researchers at Columbia University in New York studied several pre-published studies and discovered that people who included more soy in their diet had drastically lower blood pressure than those who included less.
Although I believe the study results are pretty reliable, I completely agree with many of the comments we got regarding genetically modified soy- GM soy should be avoided at all cost. And the fact is that over 90% of all soy produced in USA is genetically modified. So, if you’re going to add more soy to your diet, go for an organic soy product.
This study may also be more of a judgment on meat and milk products as much as it was positive regarding soy. Very likely those who eat more soy probably eat less meat or are maybe complete vegetarians or vegans.
There is also a very big controversy regarding the hormonal effects of soy products, so that, combined with the dangers associated with GMO require caution with soy choices.
One of the most powerful ways I know to quickly lower blood pressure is to drink 250 ml of raw, freshly juiced beet juice. Studies have found that on the average, people immediately drop their blood pressure around 10 points when doing this.
Drinking beet juice daily also lowers cholesterol levels in the long haul and produces tons of other health benefits.
Although beets are high in natural sugars, this shouldn’t be a problem for people with type 2 diabetes or those fighting obesity since you need such a small amount of beet juice to get such big results. Again, the very high fiber count helps balance the sugar.
For those who don’t like the taste of beet juice, you can smooth it out with carrots, apples or other ingredients that you like.
You’ll also benefit from eating cooked whole food beets.
A small study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry revealed that eating 6 small purple potatoes per day lowered blood pressure 5% on the average after two months.
Purple potatoes are pretty rare but you may find them in some health food stores and farmers’ markets. The health benefits of those purple potatoes were mostly considered to be their richness in potassium, vitamin C and other antioxidants, as well as dietary fiber. All potatoes, however, are loaded with these ingredients, so the study in essence reveals that eating potatoes is beneficial for your blood pressure. And it probably doesn’t matter what kind of potatoes. This has been supported in several other studies.
When we published the original article about this study, we got several questions regarding sweet potatoes as an alternative to potatoes. Sweet potatoes are generally considered healthier than white or other white potatoes. They’re lower in calories and higher in fiber. White potatoes are, however, higher in potassium, which balances out your salt intake and therefore helps lower blood pressure. So I recommend using both or which ever you like more.
A study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine revealed that people who drank three cups of black tea per day lowered their blood pressure five points on the average. The reason for this benefit was considered to be the high level of polyphenols in black tea.
The study didn’t reveal what brand of black tea was used but it was definitely regular black tea with caffeine in it. Some doctors considered caffeine bad for high blood pressure but it has never been proven as a causative agent for hypertension. But if you prefer decaffeinated black tea, it should still deliver the same results.
Many other types of tea also include polyphenols and other antioxidants. The tea most studied is, of course, green tea. It has repeatedly been proven to lower blood pressure and deliver many other health benefits.
So what to take from this study is that drinking a few cups of any type of tea per day – probably most types of tea – is good for you. Just take it easy on added sugar and milk.
One of the most welcomed study results we’ve published was from the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition on how chocolate lowers blood pressure.
There are, however, a few things to keep in mind. It’s really the cocoa that lowers blood pressure, so you should try to eat chocolate with the highest cocoa percentage possible (dark chocolate). Light milk chocolate may be pretty useless as it is high in processed and milk sugars, as well as being very high in fat from the milk.
Study subjects also only ate 50 gr of chocolate per day. Anything more than that may be useless, or even reverse the positive benefits.
Eating chocolate is also not the only way. You can drink cocoa with very little or no sugar in it and get the same benefits.
Exercises Reverse High Blood Pressure Gene
We’ve all learned that being physically active helps lower blood pressure. But a new study from the University of South Carolina at Columbia took this issue a step further and discovered that those who had a genetic tendency for high blood pressure but were physically fit, were 35% less likely to develop hypertension than those with same gene structure but not fit.
This is not only a great promotion for exercising but shows that any type of natural methods to improve your arterial health can overcome genetic defects when it comes to high blood pressure. Therefore, most people probably don’t need medications even if they are genetically predisposed to hypertension.
Squeezing a Rubber Ball
Now, here is one of the simplest methods you can do to moderately lower your blood pressure. This technique was tested and the study results were published in the Journal of Hypertension.
What you do is grab a small rubber ball with one hand (you can buy in any sport store for under $10) and squeeze it and release. Repeat for 2-3 minutes per day or whenever you feel stressed. You simply can’t overdo this.
This is the same technology used by the FDA-approved blood pressure device Zonar. Except that you don’t have to pour out $200 for a complicated device when a small rubber ball will do.
A small ball is the most convenient thing to squeeze but you can squeeze pretty much anything that fits in your hand with the same results. My friend Steve, for example, commented on the original article how he used a solid rubber credit card terminal in similar way with good results.
Using this technique only provides moderate decrease in blood pressure (a few points). Our blood pressure exercises – although quite different in practice from the rubber squeezing – are based on a similar philosophy. However, they have been proven to drop almost everyone’s blood pressure below 120/80 within a week. Very often the first time people use them. That’s how powerful they are.
Learn more and test drive our high blood pressure exercises here…
I don’t consider natural health an exact science. Different things work for different people. So sometimes you may read about a study of something particular working to lower blood pressure 5 points on the average. That doesn’t mean everyone benefited. Try it out for yourself and see if it works for you. If not, try something different.
We’re also asked how much you should eat of the ingredient studied. Again that may vary a lot from person to person. You should take the results as an indicator that this ingredient helps for blood pressure and try to add it moderately into your diet. You can also assume that related ingredients are also good. So if purple potatoes are good, then most likely white and red potatoes are good as well.
I hope I’ve addressed most of the questions regarding this subject. Please leave your thoughts in the comment sections below.