High blood pressure, also called hypertension, is a growing concern in the US and around the world. High blood pressure can be caused by excessive stress, emotional distress, and health problems related to the arteries or kidneys and left untreated, high blood pressure can be fatal.
There are natural and medicinal remedies to lower blood pressure. Yoga has been shown to help people with high blood pressure. Yoga addresses the stress and emotional balance issues that cause and worsen hypertension and blood pressure decreases with the regular practice of yoga. Yoga is also known to have stress relief benefits, which helps you deal with the stress in your life, without allowing it to affect your health and well being.
Yoga combined with pranayama breathing exercises and meditation is the best combination for lowering your stress level and blood pressure. Taking the time to sit in a quiet place, relax and turn off your thoughts will offer immediate physical and emotional benefits.
Yoga benefits people with high blood pressure by calming and stabilizing the nervous system. This helps to regulate blood pressure and reduce stress and the physical activity strengthens your heart. Some poses to try include the cat/cow sequence, spinal twist and relaxation poses.
There are some poses that should be avoided, if you have high blood pressure. The poses to avoid with high blood pressure include standing and seated forward bend, shoulderstand and bridge pose. In general, you should keep the head above the heart, if you have high blood pressure.
If you have health problems, including severe high blood pressure or other health conditions should check with your doctor before beginning a yoga class. Starting with a yoga teacher or yoga therapist is the best way to learn the practice and your instructor or yoga therapist can offer guidance for your home practice to help you reduce stress levels and help to lower your blood pressure.