Did you know that 1 in every 3 Americans suffers from high blood pressure, accounting for around 75 million adults! High blood pressure, also known as hypertension is a condition that shows no symptoms but is a result of excess workload, poor diet, obesity, smoking, stress, or even family history. If not controlled or treated in time, it can lead to heart diseases or stroke and turn fatal, which according to the CDC are the first and fifth leading causes of death in the United States.
Beyond medication, there are a number of things you can do to help lower your blood pressure, which include switching to a healthy diet and exercising regularly, reducing stress, avoiding alcohol & smoking. Practicing yoga will actually help three of these lifestyle changes: exercise, maintaining a healthy weight, and reducing stress. The American Heart Association (AHA) has also listed a number of reasons why yoga is considered good for health, one of which is also heart health! It is recommended to check with your doctor or your yoga instructor before starting yoga to be sure about which these asanas work best for you and which of them may benefit you the most:
This is one of the easiest yoga poses that regulates breathing. It helps you with blood pressure control by relaxing your mind and reducing stress. Along with peace of mind, this pose promotes a healthy body by stretching your back and neck, improving the posture of your body!
This pose reduces stress and improves blood circulation throughout the body; controlled breathing promotes calmness and reduces stress from the neck and shoulders. It is beneficial for hypertension patients as it gives you relief from different factors that contribute to high blood pressure.
Bridge Pose not only strengthens your hamstrings, abdominals, and glutes but also regulates blood pressure, calms your brain alleviates stress and manages mild depression. The pose also helps relieve hip and lower back aches while strengthening your core!
Cobra pose is helpful in circulating blood and oxygen throughout your body. It also relieves stress and promotes heart health along with more flexibility! Cobra pose is considered to be beneficial for asthma patients as well.
Corpse pose, also known as Shavasana is meant only for relaxation. It not only calms your brain, relaxes the body, relieves stress, but also reduces headaches, fatigue, and insomnia, all of which are risk factors of high blood pressure. This too is one of the easiest poses in which you can try to reduce stress, which in turn reduces your blood pressure!
While yoga is a healthful addition to a treatment plan, it is important to remember that it is not a replacement for treatments and medications that a healthcare professional recommends. In general, exercising, maintain a healthy lifestyle, reducing stress all might be a wonderful way to avoid and combat high blood pressure, but checking with your doctor and then trying therapeutic, calming yoga or workout routine is a great place to start!