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Hypertension and Exercise

Hypertension and Exercise

Can exercise help lower my blood pressure? Researchers have spent decades developing new treatments for high blood pressure, but exercise is still one of the…

Sunday, Aug 21

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Can exercise help lower my blood pressure?

Researchers have spent decades developing new treatments for high blood pressure, but exercise is still one of the best remedies around. A single workout can reduce blood pressure for an entire day, and regular exercise can keep the pressure down for the long run.

What’s more, low to moderate intensity training appears to be as beneficial — if not more so — as higher intensity training for reducing blood pressure in people with hypertension, according to the American College of Sports Medicine’s guidelines on exercise and hypertension. After analyzing 15 studies on exercise and high blood pressure, reviewers concluded that exercise training lowers blood pressure in a full 75 percent of people with hypertension.

Of course, exercise has many benefits beyond reducing blood pressure. Even if your pressure doesn’t budge, exercise may strengthen your heart, lower your cholesterol, help keep your weight in check, and decrease your risk of diabetes. The benefits extend to stroke survivors as well: Guidelines from the American Heart Association and the American College of Sports Medicine stress the importance of aerobic and strengthening exercises for improving overall health and reducing the risk of subsequent strokes.

What kind of exercise works best?

Aerobic exercises are the best choice for lowering blood pressure, according to the medical journal. You can try brisk walking, swimming, cycling, or dancing — anything that gets your heart rate up. The AHA recommends 30 minutes of physical activity at least five days a week, plus two […]

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