Lowering blood pressure
The words are in larger-than-average type. The message is simple: "The Blood Pressure Miracle." And Frank Mangano, health advocate and natural health writer, says that's all it takes to lower your blood pressure -- naturally.
"People don't want to read a lot of stuff, they just want a simple answer," Mangano says about his to-the-point book.
Q. So are you telling people to stop taking their medications?
A. Absolutely not. I stress that if you are taking blood pressure pills, do not stop without speaking to your health care practitioner. In most cases, medical doctors cooperate with patients on an all-natural plan before resorting to prescription drugs.
Q. And if the doctor won't cooperate?
A. Find another doctor.
Q. OK. Most of the solutions you list are well-known, like do more exercise.
A. Sure. It's very simple, but a lot of people don't want to put in the extra effort. They want to take a pill and be done with it. There are many more things a person can do to get the numbers down to where they should be.
Exercise and changing diet requires effort on the person's part.
Q. This seems a simple book.
A. The answers are not complicated, but there is more than one change you have to make in your diet and lifestyle to lower blood pressure. Just exercising more won't do it.
Q. Herbs, vitamins and supplements?
A. Yes, but these are not magic pills and you can have too much of a good thing. What's why I include a chart of recommended dosage. It is possible to take too much. It's a matter of finding the right balance.
Q. So how does a person start to take charge of blood pressure?
A. I recommend a combination of home monitoring and pressure taken at the doctor's office. In a lot of cases, blood pressure is not taken the right way. It should be taken from the left and right arms and you really should lie down and relax for five minutes before the pressure is taken.
I recommend home monitoring once or twice a day and keeping a record you can compare with the doctor's.
Q. We don't eat as well, move as much as previous generations, do we?
A. No, we don't. We stopped eating right and taking care of ourselves and that's the big reason why high blood pressure has become epidemic. We need proper nutrition, vitamins and supplements, not just a pill to solve the problem.
Q. Let's talk about stress.
A. Stress can kill you. Easily kill you. If someone is at a constant high level of stress, a number of health ailments can result.
Yoga is one stress-reducer I recommend. It does have a positive effect on blood pressure and overall health.
Q. So I'm taking your list of recommended foods, vitamins, herbs and supplements to the store and starting tomorrow. I'll throw away the pills soon, right?
A. You can't start something tomorrow and throw away your meds the next day. This requires effort. You're changing your lifestyle.
You have to figure between 30 and 60 days before you see results. That's why there's a guide in the book to help someone along those 60 days.
You should be able to track your progress with home monitoring and most people do see results before the full 60 days.
Q. You've got some interesting diet suggestions in the book. Like eating bison for calcium, zinc and iron. It's more nutritional than chicken, you say.
A. If the idea of eating buffalo does not appeal to you, consider using the meat in recipes. Once seasoning for recipes like chili or a casserole is added, you won't be able to tell the difference.
(c) 2009, The Orange County Register (Santa Ana, Calif.).
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