Question: Could you please tell me the best natural way to reduce high blood pressure? I have a terrible time with nasty side effect on prescription drugs.
Answer: I think that most doctors forget (if they ever knew at all) that hypertension isn’t actually a disease in itself-it’s only a symptom of some other malfunction in your body.
It’s possible that the elevated blood pressure is a protective effect enabling the heart to get the blood to all the tissues in spite of the disease, whatever that may be. But since we still haven’t figured out what that disease is, most physicians just throw drugs at the symptom and consider the problem solved when the high blood pressure goes down.
The REAL problem here is that just because the drugs have made the hypertension go away, it doesn’t mean you’re "cured"-or even safe, for that matter. People taking blood pressure lowering medications inevitably feel worse on the drugs.
It’s easy for me to play the role of "Dr. No," but I have to do better than that. So, what else can you do? There are a number of safe approaches you can try:
(1) My first choice is homeopathy. But don’t run down to the pharmacy or health food store and buy the little bottles of drops or pills that your neighbor recommended-you’ll only be disappointed. Contact the National Center for Homeopathy at (703) 548-7790 or www.homeopathic.org for the name of a qualified homeopath in your area.
(2) Acupuncture may be effective, and there are lots of practitioners who perform it across the country. To find one near you, contact the American Association of Oriental Medicine by calling (866) 455-7999 or visiting www.aaom.org.
(3) I do have to add that if you have disastrously high blood pressure, say 180 over 110, you are in serious trouble and will have to try the drugs. But "malignant hypertension," as it is called, is not common and your garden-variety hypertension will not metamorphose into it-and don’t let any doctor convince you otherwise.
(4) There are many other approaches, but one I must mention is simply to do nothing. I know this sounds radical, but you would be surprised how many people do exactly that with great success.