Doing Yoga and Meditation Daily can help increase flexibility and balance, but the ancient practice could have another benefit: helping to lower blood pressure immediately.
A Case Study on How Yoga & Aerobics Can Lower Blood Pressure
The study involved 60 individuals with high blood pressure and metabolic syndrome, a group of health conditions that amplify the risk of heart disease and stroke. The participants completed 30 minutes of aerobic exercise five times a week, followed by 15 minutes of yoga or regular muscle stretching for three months.
Both groups demonstrated improvements in resting heart rates and blood pressure during this study, but the yoga practitioners exhibited better outcomes. The yoga group decreased their systolic blood pressure by 10 points, compared to 4 points for the stretching group. As well as this, the yoga group showed significant reductions in their 10-year risk of heart attack and stroke in comparison to the stretching group.
The researchers hypothesized that the calming effects of yoga may provide an advantage, as other studies have linked yoga to reduced cortisol levels, a stress hormone. The results were published in December 2022 in the Canadian Journal of Cardiology.
What is High Blood Pressure
High blood pressure, or hypertension, is a common condition affecting millions of people worldwide. It is a leading risk factor for heart disease, stroke, and other cardiovascular complications. Regular aerobic exercise is known to be beneficial for people with high blood pressure, but recent studies suggest that adding yoga to aerobic exercise can further improve blood pressure control.
What is Yoga?
Yoga is an ancient practice that combines physical postures, breathing techniques, and meditation to promote overall health and well-being. It has been shown to be effective in reducing stress, anxiety, and depression, all of which can contribute to high blood pressure. In addition, yoga may help improve the function of the endothelium, the inner lining of blood vessels, which plays a critical role in blood pressure regulation.
Engaging in aerobic exercises such as brisk walking, running, or cycling can have favorable effects on blood pressure, as it strengthens the heart and enhances blood circulation. This, in turn, reduces the pressure on the heart and effectively lowers high blood pressure. Nevertheless, some individuals may find aerobic exercise to be too taxing, particularly if they have other health conditions like arthritis or joint pain.
Yoga and Meditation to Lower High Blood Pressure
Combining yoga and meditation with aerobic exercise can provide a low-impact, yet effective way to lower high blood pressure. Yoga postures can help improve flexibility, balance, and strength, which can make aerobic exercise more comfortable and enjoyable. In addition, yoga breathing techniques, such as deep breathing or pranayama, can help reduce stress and promote relaxation, which can further improve blood pressure control.
Numerous studies have shown that combining yoga and meditation with aerobic exercise leads to better blood pressure control. For instance, the International Journal of Yoga Therapy published a study that found that the combination of yoga and aerobic exercise was more effective in reducing high blood pressure than engaging in either activity alone. In addition, a separate study, published in the Journal of Human Hypertension, discovered that practicing yoga and aerobic exercise together for six months significantly lowered blood pressure in people with hypertension. So if you’re looking to manage your blood pressure, consider incorporating both yoga and aerobic exercise into your routine.
To incorporate yoga into your aerobic exercise routine, consider taking a yoga class or finding a yoga video online. Look for a class or video that focuses on gentle, low-impact yoga postures and breathing techniques. You can also try adding a few yoga postures and breathing exercises to your regular aerobic exercise routine, such as stretching before and after your workout or taking a few minutes to practice deep breathing.
Foods that lower blood pressure quickly
A number of potassium-rich foods can help lower blood pressure naturally, including beans, tomatoes, mushrooms, and avocado. For instance, one study found that consuming three kiwifruit a day can dramatically reduce blood pressure. Kiwi is also an excellent addition to fruit salad or when sprinkled on top of plain yogurt. Add these foods to your diet to keep your blood pressure under control in a healthy and yummy way!
Combining yoga and meditation with aerobic exercise can be an effective way to lower high blood pressure. The gentle, low-impact nature of yoga postures and breathing techniques can make aerobic exercise more comfortable and enjoyable, while also providing additional benefits for blood pressure control. Consult with your doctor before starting any new exercise program, especially if you have high blood pressure or other health conditions.