Surprising Ways to Lower Your Blood Pressure Naturally

Last Reviewed 08/30/2016

When I originally set out to write this blog, I wanted to share a number of totally natural, highly effective ways—nine ways to be specific—to lower your blood pressure by reducing the stress in your life. The thing is, medical research is ongoing, and I’m always eager to pass along the latest study findings whenever I can. So, I’m adding a tenth tip right up top here due to brand new research presented in the journal Deutsches Arzteblatt International. The advice? Lower your blood pressure by listening to classical music.

The researchers at Ruhr University Bochum set out to study the effect of different musical genres on the cardiovascular system. The 120 study participants were divided, some listening to recorded music by either Mozart, Strauss, or the pop band ABBA. Those who listened to the classical music by either Mozart or Strauss experienced notably lowered blood pressure and heart rate, while those who listened to ABBA experienced no substantial effects.

In addition to adding some Mozart to your playlist, here are nine more natural techniques for lowering your blood pressure levels by reducing the stress in your life:

  1. Get a massage: This form of bodywork helps people decrease their heart rate and reduce blood pressure naturally, minimizing the stress that can lead to cardiovascular problems and disease.

  2. Meditate: Simple meditation can offset the chronic release of cortisol, a hormonal cause for high blood pressure and stress. You can do a simple meditation by focusing on a phrase that is meaningful to you, such as a prayer or mantra. Just close your eyes and say your phrase silently as you exhale. When stray thoughts come into your mind, don’t try to force them out. Gently, and without straining, bring your focus back to your phrase. Use this technique for 10–15 minutes, once or twice daily, or as needed.

  3. Tap into the power of prayer: Spiritual practices lower stress, and are a natural way to reduce blood pressure levels—no doubt about it. In a conference at Harvard Medical School several years ago, research was cited showing that people who attend church frequently, or pray regularly, have lower rates of heart disease, hypertension, and suicide. Those who prayed even lived longer than those who did not.

  4. Rev up your activity: Exercise provides enormous mental and emotional benefits and can improve your state of mind. It doesn’t take much to get results—some regular walking can beat back depression and anxiety. If you’re prone to stress, get moving!

    Get more of Dr. Sinatra's advice on Healthy Blood Pressure

  5. Get proper rest: The age-old doctor’s recommendation goes straight to the heart of the issue. The regular fatigue of daily life can be a cause for high blood pressure. Rest includes not only your daily sleep, but adequate relaxation and vacations. I remember years ago reading a study that showed people who took more vacations lived longer.

  6. Learn to say “No”: Always accommodating others is a wonderful trait; however, we can easily become overwhelmed and fatigued in the process. Saying “No” when confronted by a request you think will probably be too stressful or time-consuming is a simple, natural way to reduce blood pressure. 

  7. Get a pet: Research confirms what you’ve probably known all along: Animals—especially those with which you’ve had a long-term relationship—can be good for your health! The survival rate of people who suffer a heart attack has been found to be five times greater among those who leave the hospital and go home to a loving pet than those who go home to an empty house or a judgmental spouse!

  8. Laugh: Children laugh an average of 400 times a day; adults, only 15. Somewhere on the way to adulthood, we lost the ability to laugh 385 times a day! Up your laughter quotient with comedy videos or playing with your children or grandchildren. In one study that lasted more than a year, cardiac patients who watched a comedy show on a daily basis had significantly lower stress hormone levels and reduced blood pressure levels, and they needed less medication.

  9. Play: Get back in touch with the playful part of yourself by observing children and seeing what they do. Or play with a child and let them set the tone. Try blowing bubbles or finger painting. Even better, you can play catch or swing on a swingset — combining light exercise and play will help minimize stress and reduce blood pressure naturally. 

Now it's your turn: Do you have a strategy for reducing stress and high blood pressure levels?  

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DISCLAIMER: The content of is offered on an informational basis only, and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the guidance of a qualified health provider before making any adjustment to a medication or treatment you are currently using, and/or starting any new medication or treatment. All recommendations are "generally informational" and not specifically applicable to any individual's medical problems, concerns and/or needs.

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