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Did you know that high blood pressure is the number one risk factor for stroke and heart attacks? And that heart disease (a symptom for stroke and attacks) is the leading cause of death in this country?
The major factors which put a person at risk for heart disease are often lifestyle related. Although genetics can make a person more susceptible to cardiovascular problems, most strokes and heart attacks are preventable through diet and lifestyle.
Here are the top factors which put a person at increased risk for high blood pressure and subsequently, stroke and heart disease:
- Excess weight or obesity
- Sedentary lifestyle and lack of exercise
- High salt intake
- Too much alcohol
- High levels of stress
- Ethnic background
- Genetic predisposition
Herbal medicine has made a name for itself for a reason: herbs have major power over the body.
Here is a list of 5 herbs which have proven effective in reducing blood pressure. All of these natural sourced herbs can calm the triggers which may lead to more serious disease:
Italians are a hearty bunch and their longevity could have a lot to do with one of their favorite spices: oregano. Carvacrol is an active ingredient in oregano which is known to lower blood pressure and reduce blood vessel inflammation.
Not only does it make a great alternative to salt seasoning in foods, oregano can reduce your heart rate and reduce arterial pressure. Oregano oil is a great supplement that can also work to fight infections.
2. Holy Basil
Supplements of holy basil can optimize cholesterol levels by having a drastic influence on blood pressure. Stress is one of the main contributing factors for high blood pressure and holy basil contains adaptogenic properties preventing stress induced bio-chemical changes.
This pungent herb can also increase heart rate and improve blood circulation helping to alleviate pressure.
You may already know that the scent of lavender is calming, but using the essential oil to massage the body can do more than just soothe your soul. Lavender works as a vasodilator by relaxing and expanding the blood vessels.
You can also make a tea out of lavender leaves, which will not only lower blood pressure, but can soothe an upset stomach and help treat insomnia.
Speaking of sleep, valerian root contains a natural tranquilizer which helps to relax muscles and the arteries in the body. Supplementing with a daily dose of valerian root can help reduce overall stress levels, improve sleep, and decrease blood pressure in people suffering from hypertension.
Although not a green herb, cinnamon makes a great herbal remedy for increased blood pressure. Known as a hot spice, cinnamon can help improve circulation and get the juices flowing so to speak.
Diabetics can use cinnamon for more than just balancing blood sugar levels. Another added benefit of adding cinnamon to your meals is it acts as an appetite suppressants, helping to reduce cravings and making your overall health more balanced.
For more natural ways to lower your blood pressure, check out this article.