By: Dr. Sarah Kristolaitis, ND
Photo credit: torange.us
According to the Heart and Stroke Foundation, 1 in 5 Canadians have high blood pressure, and another 1 in 5 have blood pressure that is bordering on being high. That’s a whole lot of people!
Most of us know the big things that help to manage blood pressure: getting enough exercise, watching how much salt you eat, and managing stress. Often though, these things are easier said than done. That’s where a Naturopathic Doctor can come in: I work with people to find ways to make their healthy diet enjoyable, and to make exercise fun again. I know that there’s no one-size-fits-all plan that works for everyone. If you hate the treadmill, that’s ok (really, it is! I’m not a huge fan of it, myself). We’ll work together and get creative to find something that does work for you.
There are also a number of natural supplements, herbs, and foods that can help decrease blood pressure. For example, the hibiscus plant has been shown to be helpful, as has garlic, a bit of dark chocolate, and many more. Research has even shown that spending time in a sauna can help bring blood pressure back down (in addition to having a whole host of other health benefits). So yes, you may be able to combat high blood pressure while eating chocolate and warming up from the Canadian winter in a nice warm sauna. Sounds pretty good, right?
If you’re wondering why you should bother seeing a doctor before using any of these things, here’s the reason: even though they’re natural, many supplements and herbs are not safe for everyone. NDs are experts on these types of treatments, and will make sure that you stay safe, avoid interactions with medications or other supplements you’re taking, and get the right dose from a high quality supplement.
If you’d like to start tackling your high blood pressure with naturopathic medicine, or find out more about what naturopathic medicine can do for you, you can book an appointment to get started today!