Wright Now Fitness: How Exercise and Diet Can Lower Blood Pressure

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Aaron Wright's 5 Tips on How to Take Control of Hypertension

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Hypertension (high blood pressure) affects more than 76 million adults in the US. Half of Americans over 65 have some type of hypertension. The higher the blood pressure, the higher the risk is for coronary artery disease, stroke, and renal failure. A person can decrease cardiovascular risk by as much as 50% by lowering blood pressure with diet and exercise!

It is important to be aware and to make lifestyle modifications if an individual has prehypertension or hypertension. Prehypertension is if systolic blood pressure (SBP) is 120-139 mmHg or diastolic blood pressure (DBP) is 80-89 mmHg. Hypertension is when a person has a systolic blood pressure (SBP) greater than or equal to 140 mmHg, a diastolic blood pressure (DBP) greater than or equal to 90 mmHg, and/or if an individual takes antihypertensive medication.

5 Ways You Can Take Control of Hypertension

If you are prehypertensive or have high blood pressure, you can reduce your cardiovascular risk by trying to control your blood pressure with diet, exercise, lifestyle modifications, and antihypertensive medication.

1. Stop smoking and moderate how much alcohol you consume. If you limit your daily intake of alcohol to one drink for a woman and no more than two drinks for a man, you can lower your SBP (systolic blood pressure) 2-4 mmHg.

2. Maintain a healthy body weight. Being overweight can lead to many health problems in addition to hypertension including metabolic syndrome, diabetes, and heart disease. Maintaining a healthy weight can result in a SBP reduction of 5-20 mmHg per 22 pounds of weight lost. It only takes an initial weight loss of 5-10% of a person's bodyweight to see noticeable improvements in glucose metabolism, cholesterol levels, and hypertension! Even as little as a 10 pound weight loss in an overweight individual can significantly reduce and/or prevent a rise in blood pressure.

3. Reduce sodium consumed to no more than 2400 mg per day, which is a teaspoon. This can reduce your SBP 2-8 mmHg.

4. Follow the DASH eating plan which is intended to decrease the amount of saturated fat, cholesterol, and total fat consumed. The DASH diet is made up of fruits, vegetables, poultry, fish, nuts, whole grains, and low-fat dairy products. This can reduce your SBP 8-14 mmHg.

5. Exercise, especially aerobic exercise such as brisk walking, biking, the elliptical etc. for at least 30 minutes almost every day can reduce your SBP 4-9 mmHg. Individuals who are physically active and exercise can prevent, delay the onset of, and treat hypertension.

I will see you at your next workout!
Aaron Wright
Look Younger. Feel Stronger. Live Longer.

Aaron Wright, CSCS, AHFS, CPT, creator of the Wright Now Fitness System, a comprehensive dvd and digital exercise system "for everyone", is an ACE advanced health and fitness specialist, ACE certified personal trainer, orthopedic exercise specialist, functional training specialist, sports conditioning specialist, therapeutic exercise specialist, exercise programming expert, and health and wellness speaker.

Please visit us at http://www.wrightnowfitness.com for more information on our DVD and digital download/instant streaming workouts and more tips and advice on the benefits of diet and exercise to prevent hypertension.

NOTE: Always consult your physician or health care provider before beginning any exercise program.

1. Kenney, W. Larry and Holowatz, Lacy A. (2012). Hypertension In Ace Advanced Health & Fitness Specialist Manual (pp. 171-197) United States of America: American Council on Exercise (ACE).

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Michelle Wright
Wright Now Fitness
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