Exercise Can Help Lower High Blood Pressure

by Jodee on March 7, 2011

It’s a fact that people lead much more sedentary lifestyles now than in previous generations, so it should be no surprise to discover that people who are not getting off the couch to engage in physical activity regularly have a 30-50 percent higher risk of developing heart disease than those who have a more active lifestyle.

A person who is overweight or obese is at a higher level of risk for developing high blood pressure. While medications can be used to bring the levels down, any use of drugs must be considered carefully. All medications, including those used to treat high blood pressure, have potential side effects and the individual and his or her doctor must weigh the benefits of using them against the potential risks of introducing a drug into the body.

Aerobic exercise can help to reduce high blood pressure, and it can even help to prevent hypertension. Engaging in an activity that increases the heart rate and keeps it elevated for a time can help to improve heart health, even if the participant doesn’t lose any weight as a result.

Healthy Aerobic Exercise to Lower Blood Pressure

There are many types of aerobic exercise that can help to bring blood pressure down to a healthier level. Walking is a great choice for people who are new to exercising to start with. It’s something that is easy to do, and all an individual needs to get started is a sturdy pair of shoes.

Other types of aerobic exercise are:

  • Jogging
  • Cycling
  • Swimming
  • Dancing

For aerobic exercise to be an effective part of high blood pressure treatment, it must be performed regularly. One way to avoid becoming bored with a workout routine is to participate in a variety of activities.

Joining a walking or jogging group can help to keep someone who is new to aerobic exercises motivated. Having to schedule the activity means that the participant needs to plan to participate in it and is more likely to stay on track. Exercising with other people is a good strategy for sticking with an exercise routine.

Before deciding to start an aerobic exercise program to treat high blood pressure, it’s important to see a doctor. If making lifestyle changes, such as increasing physical activity levels, are going to part of a treatment plan, the doctor should be monitoring the patient’s progress to determine whether the plan is succeeding in lowering the patient’s high blood pressure. In a case where aerobic exercise is not bringing the blood pressure down, using medications can be considered.

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