3 Tips To Lower Your Blood Pressure This Winter, According To Experts

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Staying healthy in the winter can feel like an uphill battle. You have the stress of the holidays weighing on you, cold and flu season dawning on you, and then there’s all of those tempting, high-sugar, high-fat seasonal foods that are so hard to resist. In addition to issues like viruses and weight gain, high blood pressure is another health risk you may be facing this winter as a result of these factors. Luckily, there are a few things you can do to manage your blood pressure and keep your health in the best shape possible.

To get the low-down on some of the best tips to do just that, we spoke to Joanna Wen, certified health coach and founder of Spices & Greens. She told us that prioritizing a healthy diet, relaxation, and sleep ice key. Find all of her great advice below!

1. Maintain a healthy diet

First thing’s first: when it comes to your overall health, including your blood pressure, remember that a healthy diet is always essential. That’s why Wen says one of the best things you can do to keep your blood pressure in check this winter is to keep an eye on your diet. “Eat plenty of fresh veggies and watch how much salt you’re consuming,” she says. In addition to “ditching processed foods,” which are terrible for your body, she also recommends “adding more spice and flavor to your meals with fresh herbs and spices like garlic and paprika that can help with blood pressure.” Yum!

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2. Relax!

Winter can be stressful when the holidays roll around. However, you should never forget to find some time to fit in a little rest and relaxation. This is important not only for your mental health, but for your physical health, too. In fact, prioritizing relaxation is a key component of lowering your blood pressure. Wen offers some advice: “Try a calming activity like meditation or yoga which can help relax tight muscles and reduce stress levels, both of which have been shown to potentially lower blood pressure,” she says. Noted!

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3. Prioritize quality sleep

In addition to relaxation, it’s important to prioritize real, quality rest as well. We get it: getting a good night’s sleep can be tough, especially with the stress that often comes with the holiday season. However, there are a few changes you can make to ensure you’re getting the best rest possible. Wen recommends “putting away digital devices an hour before bedtime, sleeping in a cool environment, and having relaxing evening rituals like stretching,” all of which can “improve your body’s ability to relax and manage stress, thereby lowering your blood pressure levels” Not to mention all the other health benefits that come with being well-rested!

The bottom line

Managing your blood pressure can be tricky, and at the end of the day, talking to a doctor and figuring out what works for you and your lifestyle is always the best way to go. However, these three tips are a great idea for anyone to follow–high blood pressure or not. “In short, proper diet, stress management, and better sleep habits may be great allies in keeping your winter blood pressure levels healthy,” Wen concludes.

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