The two most common remedies for hypertension include lifestyle changes and prescription drug therapy. Reducing or eliminating high risk factors, such as obesity, cigarette smoking, alcohol consumption, and salt intake, can significantly reduce blood pressure levels, creating viable remedies for hypertension. When lifestyle changes either cannot be made or simply are not an issue, doctors may rely on various prescription medications, such as beta-blockers or diuretics, to help decrease blood pressure.
Proper exercise and diet are effective remedies for hypertension because they address some of the most frequently noted risk factors that make individuals more susceptible to developing hypertension in the first place. Consuming a diet full of processed foods and high in fat and sodium can increase the stress levels placed on the circulatory system which, in turn, works to increase blood pressure. The same effect results when a healthy exercise routine is not followed and obesity is left untreated.
Other risky lifestyle choices include cigarette smoking and alcohol consumption. Like obesity, cigarette smoking puts a great strain on the cardiovascular system and the body in general. It also robs the body of much-needed oxygen that it needs to function properly. Excessive alcohol consumption, typically involving more than one or two drinks per day, tends to overwork the heart and circulatory system, increasing the effects of hypertension. The elimination of these choices can prove to be effective remedies for hypertension.
If lifestyle changes are not viable remedies for hypertension, prescription drugs may be used. Diuretics, also known as water pills, help to eliminate excess liquid from the body, generally lowering blood pressure and reducing the symptoms of hypertension. Other remedies for hypertension using prescription drugs involve the use of beta-blockers, designed specifically to decrease heart rate by affecting the nerve controls in the heart itself. Alpha-blockers and calcium channel-blockers are two more of the many prescription remedies for hypertension—both work to inhibit the arteries from being able to restrict, which allows for increased blood flow and decreased blood pressure.
While many patients may only need one or two remedies for hypertension in order to reduce the effects, others may need to address their hypertension with multiple courses of treatment. These may include losing weight by eating healthier and starting an exercise program or quitting smoking or drinking in conjunction with prescription drug therapy. For individuals not suffering from hypertension, following the lifestyle guidelines may also drastically reduce the chances of developing hypertension later in life.