HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE
Hypertension and pulmonary arterial hypertension
High blood pressure often has no symptoms or warning signs. If it stays elevated above 120/80 mmHg over time and is uncontrolled, it can lead to heart and kidney disease. High blood pressure
causes the heart to work harder than normal putting both the heart
and arteries at greater risk of damage. High blood pressure, or
hypertension, increases the risk of heart attacks, strokes, kidney
failure, damage to the eyes, congestive heart failure,
atherosclerosis and many other medical problems.
Left untreated high
blood pressure can cause the heart to become abnormally large and
less efficient (ventricular hypertrophy) causing heart failure and
increased risk of heart attack.
Although high blood pressure can cause headaches, dizziness and
problems with vision, the majority of people suffer no symptoms at
As a result many people
with hypertension remain undiagnosed because they have no symptoms
to motivate them to see a doctor or get their blood pressure
If high blood pressure
is not treated and is combined with obesity, smoking, high blood
cholesterol levels or diabetes, the risk of heart attack is several
High blood pressure is known to aggravate endothelial dysfunction and leading researchers have identified the endothelium as an “end organ” for damage caused by high blood pressure. Optimal blood pressure of 115/75 mmHg (or lower) is recommended.
It is worth purchasing a blood pressure testing machine for those at risk of developing high blood pressure.
Diagram of the human heart. Click to enlarge.
High blood pressure in the lungs is called pulmonary
hypertension (PH) or pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH). PAH
is a chronic and life-changing disease that can lead to right
heart failure if left untreated. Patients experience
symptoms such as shortness of breath, dizziness and fatigue and
the severity of symptoms usually correlates with the progression
of the disease.
Pulmonary arterial hypertension is a progressive disorder
characterised by abnormally high blood pressure (hypertension)
in the pulmonary artery, the blood vessel that carries blood
from the heart to the lungs. Hypertension occurs when most of
the very small arteries throughout the lungs narrow in diameter,
which increases the resistance to blood flow through the lungs.
To overcome the increased resistance, pressure increases in the
pulmonary artery and in the heart chamber that pumps blood into
the pulmonary artery (the right ventricle).
Asthma and breathlessness can be signs of
pulmonary arterial hypertension. See the
page for natural remedies and advice.
Causes of high blood pressure
People from African-Caribbean and South Asian communities
are at greater risk of high blood pressure.
Can be an inherited condition.
High blood pressure can affect older people who have led an
alcohol can raise the blood pressure significantly.
Being overweight, obese
and under active can raise blood pressure.
Not eating enough fruit and vegetables can raise the blood pressure.
Smoking tobacco significantly raises the blood pressure.
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The following herbs may increase blood
salt intake can help to lower
blood pressure. Never consume salted nuts or crisps and avoid anchovies and any processed foods which have salt as an ingredient including bread and cheese. If salt is required only ever use unrefined sea salt sparingly. Most foods consumed naturally contain sodium so extra is unnecessary and potentially very harmful to those suffering from high blood pressure.
Some prescribed blood pressure medications can cause
Parkinsonism which mimics the symptoms of
Parkinson's disease. If these symptoms should manifest
themselves the doctor will need to review and change the
Nutrients necessary to correct blood pressure
When magnesium is present in water, life and health are enhanced. One of the main benefits of drinking plenty of magnesium-rich water is to prevent heart disease and stroke. Full hydration is essential to help prevent clogging of arteries in the heart and brain and full hydration with water and magnesium is crucial for treating high blood pressure without using diuretics or other pharmaceutical medications. Bottled mineral water is usually far higher in magnesium than tap water. The recommended dietary allowances for
magnesium are 350 mg per day for adult man 300 mg for women and
450 mg during pregnancy and lactation.
Highest sources of magnesium in milligrams per 100 grams
Rice bran 781 mg
Basil, coriander, dill and sage 694 mg
Pumpkin and squash seeds 535 mg
Raw cocoa 499 mg
Flaxseeds 392 mg
Brazil nuts 376 mg
Sesame seeds 353 mg
Sunflower seeds 346 mg
Wheat germ 313 mg
Black strap molasses 242 mg
Spirulina 189 mg
Kale 88 mg
Globe artichoke 60 mg
Okra 57 mg
Rocket 47 mg
Plantain 37 mg
Butternut squash 34 mg
Potatoes with skin 30 mg
Passion fruit 29 mg
Savoy cabbage 28 mg
Peas 24 mg
Raspberries 22 mg
Guava 22 mg
Blackberries 20 mg
Kiwi fruit 17 mg
as well as
calcium, play an important role in regulating high blood
pressure. Try baking, roasting or
steaming when cooking vegetables. Avoid boiling as potassium leaches out
into the water during cooking. Potassium requirements have not been
established but an intake of 800 mg to 1300 mg. per day is
estimated as approximately the minimum need. As for calcium, an
average adult needs at least 600 mg of calcium daily.
Highest sources of potassium in milligrams per 100 grams
Dried basil, chervil, coriander, dill, parsley 4240 mg
Sun dried tomatoes 3427 mg
Raw cocoa 2509 mg
Whey powder 2289 mg
Paprika and chilli powder 2280 mg
Yeast extract 2100 mg
Rice bran 1485 mg
Black strap molasses 1464 mg
Dried soya beans 1364 mg
Spirulina 1363 mg
Pistachio nuts 1007 mg
Squash and pumpkin seeds 919 mg
Sunflower seeds 850 mg
Almonds 705 mg
Dates 696 mg
Whelks 694 mg
Dried figs 680 mg
Clams 628 mg
Watermelon seeds 648 mg
Chestnuts 592 mg
Cashews (unsalted) 565 mg
Brussel sprouts (juiced raw) 389 mg
Coconut water 250 mg
Orange juice 200 mg
Highest sources of calcium in milligrams per 100 grams
Dried herbs such as basil, dill, marjoram and thyme 2113 mg (rosemary is also equally in calcium but should be avoided when high blood pressure is present.
Spirulina 1362 mg
Sesame seeds 975 mg
Tinned fish with bones such as sardines, mackerel and pilchards 383 mg
Tofu 372 mg
Almonds 264 mg
Flaxseeds 255 mg
Mussels 180 mg
Oysters 170 mg
Brazil nuts 160 mg
Prawns 150 mg
Tripe 150 mg
Scallops, spirulina and watercress 120 mg
Whole milk and whole yoghurt 113 mg
Chinese cabbage 105 mg
Dark green leafy vegetables such as dandelion greens, kale, spinach, Swiss chard and turnip greens 99 mg
Okra 77 mg
Soya beans 75 mg
Boneless fish such as bass, herring, pike, perch, pollock and rainbow trout 74 mg
Kidney beans 70 mg
Eggs 60 mg
Broccoli 47 mg
Balanced levels of
cobalt, nickel, vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin B12 and vitamin B15 are vital for correct functioning of the heart and
they all interact with each other. See the natural food sources of each nutrient below.
Together with vitamin B12, cobalt can help in the production of DNA, choline and
red blood cells, promote a healthy nervous system, lower the blood pressure and
can hold the myelin on level, the greasy cover that protects the nerves.
Cobalt specifically affects the
right coronary artery, resulting in vasodilatation with low levels and
vasoconstriction with high levels, while
exerts the same vasodilatation / vasoconstriction effect on the left coronary
Natural sources of
cobalt in alphabetical order
Natural sources of
nickel in alphabetical order
Highest sources of
in micrograms per 100 grams
Clams 98.9 μg
Liver 83.1 μg
Barley grass juice 80 μg
Nori seaweed 63.6 μg
Octopus 36 μg
Caviar/fish eggs 20.0 μg
Ashitaba (dried powder) 17.0 μg
Herring 13.7 μg
Tuna fish 10.9 μg
Crab 10.4 μg
Mackerel 8.7 μg
Lean grass fed beef 8.2 μg
Duck eggs, goose eggs, rabbit 6 μg
Crayfish, pork heart, rainbow trout 5 μg
Shiitake mushrooms 4.8 μg
Lobster 4 μg
Lamb, venison 3.7 μg
Swiss Cheese 3.3 μg
Salmon 3.2 μg
Whey powder 2.37 μg
Golden chanterelle mushrooms 2 μg
Tuna 1.9 μg
Halibut 1.2 μg
Chicken egg 1.1 μg
Chicken, turkey 1.0 μg
Anchovies 0.9 μg
Ashitaba leaves 0.4 μg
μg is one microgram.
Vitamin B15 has been shown to lower
blood cholesterol, improve circulation and general oxygenation
of cells and tissues, and is helpful for
Natural sources of vitamin B15 in alphabetical order
Highest sources of
vitamin C in milligrams per 100 grams
Acerola cherries 1677.6 mg
Camu camu berries 532 mg
Rosehips 426 mg
Green chillies 242.5 mg
Guavas 228.3 mg
Yellow bell peppers 183.5 mg
Black currants 181 mg
Thyme 160.01 mg
Red chillies 143.7 mg
Drumstick pods 141 mg
Kale 120 mg
Jalapeno peppers 118.6 mg
Kiwi fruit 105.4 mg
Sun dried tomatoes 102 mg
Broccoli 89 mg
Brussel sprouts 85 mg
Cloves, saffron 81 mg
Chilli pepper 76 mg
Mustard greens 70 mg
Cress 69 mg
Persimmons fruit 66 mg
Swede 62 mg
Basil 61 mg
Papaya 60 mg
Rosemary 61 mg
Pomelo fruit 61 mg
Strawberries 58 mg
Chives 58 mg
Oranges 53.2 mg
Lemons 53 mg
Pineapple 48 mg
Cauliflower 48 mg
Kumquats 43.9 mg
Watercress 43 mg
Wasabi root 41.9 mg
Kidney bean sprouts 38.7 mg
Melon 36.7 mg
Elderberries 36 mg
Breadfruit 29 mg
Coriander 27 mg
Vitamin D is vital for calcium to be utilised and is often deficient in people of the northern hemisphere due to weak sunshine between April and October and also because many cover up, work inside or use sunscreens which all prevents the body from manufacturing vitamin D from the sun's rays on the skin. The body only stores enough vitamin D for up to 60 days and, therefore extra must be consumed from the diet.
Highest sources of vitamin D per serving listed
Krill oil - 1 teaspoon: 1000 IU
Eel - 85 g or 3 oz: 792 IU
Maitake mushrooms - 70 g: 786 IU
Rainbow trout - 85 g or 3 oz: 540 IU
Cod liver oil - 1 teaspoon: 440 IU
Mackerel - 85 g or 3 oz: 400 IU
Salmon - 85 g or 3 oz: 400 IU
Halibut - 85 g or 3 oz: 196 IU
Tuna - 85 g or 3 oz: 228 IU
Sardines - 85 g or 3 oz: 164 IU
Chanterelle mushrooms - 85 g or 3 oz: 155 IU
Raw milk - 1 glass or 8 oz: 98 IU
Egg yolk - 1 large: 41 IU
Caviar - 28g or 1 oz: 33 IU
Hemp seeds - 100 g or 3.5 oz: 22 IU
Portabella mushrooms - 85 g or 3 oz: 6 IU
NOTE: One IU is the biological equivalent of 0.3 μg or 0.3 micrograms.
Vitamin E is an antioxidant capable of effectively helping to prevent many conditions and diseases including arthritis, cancer, dementia, diabetes, high blood pressure and strokes . It also assists in fighting heart disease and is essential for red blood cells, helps with cellular respiration and protects the body from pollution, especially the lungs. Vitamin E is also useful in preventing blood clots from forming
Highest sources of vitamin E in milligrams per 100 grams
Wheat germ 149.4 mg
Hemp seeds 55 mg
Hazelnut oil 47 mg
Almond oil 39 mg
Sunflower seeds 38.3 mg
Chilli powder 38.1 mg
Paprika 38 mg
Rice bran oil 32 mg
Grape seed oil 29 mg
Almonds 26.2 mg
Oregano 18.3 mg
Hazelnuts 17 mg
Flaxseed oil 17 mg
Peanut oil 16 mg
Hazelnuts 15.3 mg
Corn oil 15 mg
Olive oil 14 mg
Soya bean oil 12 mg
Pine nuts 9.3 mg
Cloves (ground) 9 mg
Peanuts 8 mg
Celery flakes (dried) 6 mg
Spirulina 5 mg
Dried apricots 4.3 mg
Bell peppers (red), eel, olives and salmon 4 mg
Jalapeno peppers 3.6 mg
Anchovies 3.3 mg
Broccoli, chicken, chilli peppers (sun-dried), cod, crayfish, dandelion greens, egg yolk, duck, goose, pecan nuts, spinach, tomatoes (tinned or pureed) turkey and turnip greens 3 mg
Avocado, beef, bilberries, blue berries, butter, chicory greens, cinnamon (ground), crab, halibut, herring (pickled), mackerel, marjoram, mustard greens, pistachio nuts, poppy seeds, sardines, sesame seeds, Swiss chard, trout, tuna, turnips and walnuts 2 mg
Fish roe 1.9 mg
Asparagus, kiwi fruit and parsnips 1.5 mg
Black berries 1.2 mg
Chlorella 1.1 mg
Natural remedies for high blood pressure
salt intake lowers the blood
pressure. Use spices or seaweed for taste instead which will add more very
healthy nutrients to the diet.
A diet that emphasises fruits, vegetables
and whole grains appears effective in shaving points off a blood pressure reading.
Apple cider vinegar: take one tablespoon per day.
reduces the risk of heart disease and can lower blood pressure as
it protects blood cholesterol from oxidation. It is also rich in
Avocado is rich in healthy fats and nutrients that protect the
Beetroot has powerful blood pressure lowering abilities.
Cantaloupe can reduce the plaque that sticks to arterial walls.
Consume one bowl of cantaloupe each day.
reduces blood pressure.
Chilli pepper contains a compound called capsaicin that is beneficial for treating heart and circulatory problems. It also helps reduce the risk of irregular heart rhythms and lowers cholesterol levels and blood pressure. The phytochemicals present in this spice also purify the blood and enhance immunity.
Add half to one teaspoon of cayenne pepper to a cup of hot water.
Stir well and drink it.
Repeat two or three times daily for a few weeks.
Follow it with a cup of hibiscus tea to heal the burning sensation and promote heart health.
Alternatively it can be added to many savoury dishes.
Cumin: Half a teaspoon in warm water or sauces or on meals
everyday - lowers blood pressure and purifies and thins the blood
Flax seeds: are rich in vitamin E and other nutrients that can lower blood pressure and helps to improve blood flow..
Garlic: consume four cloves per day. Always leave to stand for ten minutes after chopping or crushing before cooking or consuming to allow the allicin to be produced. Garlic
can help to thin the blood as efficiently as aspirin without the danger of stomach bleeds or ulcers but should be avoided if blood thinners are taken.
lowers blood pressure and purifies and thins the blood.
It can produce significantly higher insulin sensitivity
which is beneficial to
diabetics as well as lower LDL cholesterol and triglycerides.
Grapes (red) contain flavonoids, which stop bad cholesterol from
oxidising and sticking to artery walls and grape seed extract has been proven to lower blood pressure.
Daikon is a type of radish known to lower blood pressure.
Figs are rich in
fibre which helps to stabilise the blood pressure. Another
remedy is to place 3 fig leaves in half a litre of bottled mineral
water. Boil for 15 minutes and drink daily.
Hemp seeds are easily digested and very rich in healthy fatty
acids, essential amino acids and minerals which can help reduce
Holy basil, when taken daily, can lower high blood pressure by helping optimize
Horseradish speeds up the
metabolism and helps to protect against high blood pressure.
is a natural diuretic
which can also regulate blood pressure
Maqui berry is a Chilean 'super fruit' which contains the
highest amount of antioxidants and anti inflammatory compounds than
any other known natural food. It also contains a high amount of
compounds which boost metabolism, reduce blood sugar, blood pressure
and LDL cholesterol. Regular consumption can also help to reduce
is alkalising, mineralising, oxidant and diuretic
and helps control heart rate and blood pressure offering protection against
stroke and coronary heart disease.
Nuts and raisins: One small daily handful
all shown some effect in lowering high
Passionflower is effective in lowering blood pressure since it
reduces stress and anxiety.
Pineapple has powerful properties that act as anticoagulants that can reduce high blood pressure.
Pomegranates and pomegranate juice can radically reduce plaque on artery walls. Drink around two large glasses daily.
daikon speeds up the metabolism, increases removal of waste and protects
against high blood pressure and heart disease.
Spinach is rich in vitamins A and C, which help to prevent
artery clogging plaque from developing. It also contains good levels
of potassium and vitamin B9 (folic acid) which lowers the blood
Tomatoes consumed regularly (cooked and uncooked) this
antioxidant-rich food that prevents the oxidisation of LDL
cholesterol and can cut the risk of arteriosclerosis by half. Must be consumed with an oily food such as avocado, coconut, fish, nut, olive, seed or other plant oils in order to absorb the ft-soluble carotenoids.
Turmeric: Studies indicate that turmeric can help prevent atherosclerosis. Turmeric has an active ingredient called curcumin that helps maintain heart health by reducing cholesterol oxidation, plaque build-up and clot formation. Plus, it helps lower LDL and provides anti-inflammatory benefits. Being a potent antioxidant, it also neutralises free radicals that contribute to aging and several chronic diseases. Use turmeric regularly in cooking. It can be added to all kinds of dishes and vegetables. It is good with brown rice and cauliflower for added heat health benefits. One teaspoon of turmeric powder can be simmered in one cup of water or milk. Drink it once or twice daily for several weeks to a few months.
Valerian contains a natural tranquiliser which relaxes muscles
and lowers blood pressure. Daily consumption of valerian will aid in
a state of overall relaxation and elimination of stress which will,
in turn, decrease blood pressure in people experiencing
Wasabi reduces blood pressure and protects the heart.
Wheatgrass has anti-inflammatory properties and is beneficial for the reduction of
high blood pressure and lowering of
It can easily be grown as a sprout on the windowsill.
See the Nature
Cures Sprout page.
Herbs and spices known to reduce blood pressure
Bergamot, marjoram, oregano, pepperwort and thyme contain carvacrol which is very effective in
lowering blood pressure. It reduces the heart rate, mean arterial
pressure, and both the diastolic and systolic blood pressures as
well. Oregano is also a viable alternative to salt in meals, as the
sodium in salt is a leading cause of high blood pressure. A
high-sodium diet can lead to high blood pressure as each teaspoon of
salt has more than 2,300 mg of sodium. Oregano is a sodium-free
food, so it does not contribute to a higher blood pressure. A
low-sodium diet for individuals with high blood pressure has a limit
of 1,500 mg per day.
Chinese hibiscus: Researchers from Taiwan found that an extract of hibiscus flowers had anti-atherosclerosis activity. They believe that hibiscus contains antioxidant compounds that help prevent the oxidation of low-density lipoprotein (LDL), or bad cholesterol, that contributes to atherosclerosis and heart disease. An infusion prepared from this herb is also believed to help regulate high blood pressure.
Boil two petals of a hibiscus flower in one cup of water.
Strain and add one teaspoon of raw honey.
Drink this once daily for a few weeks.
Hawthorn: In western herbalism, hawthorn is a well-known herb for heart conditions because it is excellent for the cardiovascular system. It helps increase blood flow to the heart and improves cardiac muscle contractions, thus leading to a stronger pumping action. It also helps increase cardiac performance and output and reduces the heart’s workload. Plus, it has an anti-arrhythmic effect that helps steady the heartbeat. This herb can be taken in supplement form by way of an extract standardised to contain about 2 to 3
percent flavonoids. The general dosage is 300 to 600 mg three times daily. Follow this natural treatment for several weeks to a few months. Note: Though this herb is safe to use, consult your doctor before taking this or any other herbal remedy.
Horse chestnut is good for poor circulation in the veins or chronic venous insufficiency. It is used to relieve symptoms such as swelling and inflammation in
haemorrhoids and strengthen blood vessel walls. Horse chestnut can be taken as a tea. It can also be applied externally as a compress.
People with an allergy to the horse chestnut family, bleeding disorders, or people taking blood thinners should not take horse chestnut. Only products made from the seeds or bark of the young branches should be used. Other parts of the plant are poisonous. Although uncommon, side effects have included kidney damage, severe bleeding, bruising and liver damage.
Massaging the body
lavender oil can dramatically reduce blood pressure by 50
percent. Lavender works as a vasodilator by relaxing and expanding
the blood vessels, thereby causing the blood pressure to lower.
Lavender oil can be applied throughout the body or by bathing using
either lavender flowers or the oil itself. Boiled lavender leaves
and flowers can be used internally, as a tea, which has the added
benefits of treating insomnia or an upset stomach.
Other ways tpo lower the blood pressure naturally
The body is already at a disadvantage because of the poor food that has been ingested for so long that any extra stress leads to a downward spiral of health.
Shedding pounds, cutting down on
tobacco smoking and limiting
alcohol are all proven ways to help
control blood pressure.
Check the body mass index chart to find out the ideal weight:
Body Mass Index Chart
People who cooked with a blend of sesame
and rice bran oils
saw a significant drop in blood pressure and improved cholesterol
levels, according to new research presented at the American Heart
Association's High Blood Pressure Research 2012 Scientific Sessions.
The researchers found cooking with a combination of these oils in a
variety of ways worked nearly as well as commonly prescribed high
blood pressure medication.
Raw juice therapy can successfully treat high blood pressure. The best
organic natural foods to
juice or blend are:
beetroot, carrots, cucumber,
grapes, orange and raisins. Add any other the other natural foods on this page if desired.
Bioflavonoids (vitamin P) are vital in their ability to
increase the strength of the capillaries (blood vessels) and
to regulate their permeability. They assist
vitamin C in keeping collagen, the intercellular "cement" in
healthy condition; are essential for the proper absorption and use
of vitamin C. Also prevents vitamin C from being destroyed in the
body by oxidation and is beneficial in
by preventing haemorrhages and ruptures in the capillaries
and connective tissues and builds a protective barrier against
Quercetin is a very highly concentrated form of bioflavonoids
derived from citrus fruits.
Cut out coffee
Besides the obvious adverse effects of caffeine on the brain and body, the toxic
pesticides used on coffee beans and the roasting process creates a composition of chemicals in coffee which block absorption of many vital nutrients and affect the adrenal glands. This creates a harmful imbalance and toxic affect on the brain and intestines. See the
Dangers of Coffee page for more information and alternatives.
Cut out sugar
Sugar is highly addictive and has become more profitable than tobacco and alcohol so it is now added freely to thousands of processed food products to ensure repeat sales but it is one of the most detrimental foods consumed today. The massive rise in diabetes, obesity, heart disease and many other devastating and deadly diseases can be attributed to the daily consumption of high amounts of sugar. Pure honey, sweet potato, Swede, parsnips, coconut, raisins, sultanas, currants and sweet fruits like berries, apricots and peaches can be used as a very simple alternative to give the same satisfaction of a sweet taste but with added benefits of nutrients which sugar (especially bleached white sugar) does not possess. Sugar feeds the pathogenic bacteria in the intestines so they crowd out the friendly bacteria which leads to nutrient deficiency, infection, fatigue, depression, a lowered resistance to viruses and yeasts and ultimately to disease. See
Cut out cream and cheese
Use cold-pressed coconut oil, coconut milk or organic plain yoghurt
as an alternative to cream in sauces and with fruit. Yoghurt adds some more of those necessary
beneficial bacteria to the intestines. Cheese contains too much sodium for those suffering with high blood pressure so should be avoided.
Cut out white flour
White flour has had all the nutritional value bleached and stripped out. Use amaranth,
buckwheat, coconut flour,
quinoa, rice flour and rye as alternatives. Rye especially cannot be stripped of its nutritional husks in the food manufacturing process. The body needs fibre every single day for the intestines to do their job. See the
Fibre page to find out why.
Cleanse the system
Cleanse and Detoxify page to find out how to flush out the system and detoxify the brain, blood and liver.
"Nature cures not the physician..." Hippocrates 460 BC
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