Ever since I posted the nitric oxide dump exercise routine video, I have had a number of questions.
Some of them include; what is nitric oxide dump, why do a nitric oxide dump (the benefits of nitric oxide), why call it ‘dump’ and what does the nitric oxide dump do.
So, you are in luck because I am going to answer these nitric oxide related questions here for you.
I will also tell you about the surge in sales of arginine and citrulline supplements as possible substitutes for viagra.
Oh yes, there’s a relationship between arginine, citrulline and nitric oxide. I’ll explain that…and even link up nitric oxide with the popular viagra pill.
Are arginine and citrulline supplements worth your money? Are they the silver bullet for erectile dysfunction?
Plus you get to know if dark chocolate does boost nitric oxide levels in the body too, right here. A lot to cover.
But before then, I should say a ‘Big Thank You’ to you folks for giving my nitric oxide dump exercise video a nice leg up on the You Tube platform. It’s 11 days since I posted the video and at the time of writing, the video has garnered over 250,000 views. Awesome!
The purists will say, what’s there to shout about? After all, there are videos with 5 million views and counting…
Well, a lot actually…
…because my channel is a relatively new one on the You Tube platform with a small subscriber base.
So, over a quarter of million views in 11 days for this video, is something I am certainly proud of. As I write, the momentum of the views has decelerated considerably but I enjoyed it whilst the momentum lasted. Thank you all.
If you’re not sure what I am talking about, the video will be embedded on this page on the relevant section. Don’t worry.
Okay, let’s get back on track and talk about the nitric oxide dump exercise routine.
What is Nitric oxide?
It sort of makes sense to talk about the molecule of nitric oxide first; before we dive into what nitric oxide dump is. What is nitric oxide?
Allow me to take you on short walk on Geek Street. Don’t worry. It’s not going to be long. But it’s essential to our understanding of the concept of the dump and it’s benefits.
The substance, Nitric oxide has come a long way. It’s formula is NO. It is a gas molecule. A colourless gas. It’s journey of discovery ended in 1992 when it got the title of ‘Molecule of the Year‘.
Through years of intense research Louis Ignarro and Ferid Murad finally uncovered this beautiful nitric oxide as a signalling molecule for the cardiovascular system.
Inside the body, nitric oxide is a free radical. So, even though we always talk about getting rid of free radicals in the body, nitric oxide is one free radical you want to embrace and keep. For good.
Nitric oxide is a biologically active compound. It’s a mesenger molecule involved in a lot of biological processes in both mammals and plants. The main enzyme responsible for its synthesis is Nitric Oxide Synthase.
That’s the link between arginine and nitric oxide. You need arginine to make nitric oxide.
This is probably the reason why some Nutraceutical companies have now developed arginine supplements. The premise is to boost nitric oxide production by making the amino acid arginine readily available in the body, but the results have been very disappointing.
High arginine levels in the body through supplemental arginine does not appear to be an effective way of achieving high nitric oxide levels in the body. There’s something about synthetic arginine amino acid that doesn’t quite hit the mark.
Maybe the nitric oxide synthase enzyme doesn’t quite warm up to synthetic arginine. Which is just as well.
Because one has to be careful in attempting to over-promote the production nitric oxide in the body especially through the use of supplements. The reason is that there has been some research to suggest that nitric oxide in excess may play a role in cancer genesis.
This paper seems to suggest nitric oxide may be involved in some of the events mediating cancer origin like formation of new blood vessels.
But don’t panic just yet about the role of nitric oxide in cancer. Because the silver lining is that; this study tells us that nitric oxide actaully kills cancer cells. They used nitric oxide in the treatment of mouth cancer successfully.
Also this study talks about the power of nitric oxide to suppress cancer growth as well as the spread of cancer in the body. It’s role in cancer treatment and prevention appears to supercede any suspicion of it’s involvement in cancer causation. So, please don’t fret, okay.
Nitric oxide is very diffusible. Meaning it permeates cell membranes very easily once it is signalled to commence work, because nitric oxide is very water soluble.
Talking about oral supplementation to boost nitric oxide production.
Nutraceutical companies have gone a step further to make L-citrulline supplements to increase nitric oxide levels. L-citrulline is another amino acid. A non-essential amino acid.
Some have gone one more step to combine Arginine and citrulline together like this one here for convenience.
L-citrulline is converted into L-arginine by the kidneys. The L-arginine is then converted to nitric oxide. A lot of these supplements have been developed to serve as alternatives to the popular drug, Viagra.
Of course, we all know about viagra and blood flow and what it does to fix erectile dysfunction.
Feedback from people who have used citrulline supplements have been disappointing. No better than a placebo effect. Even this reseach paper here confirmed the futility of citrulline use and failure to increase blood flow.
Could the failure of citrulline substitution for arginine and failure to ignite substantial nitric oxide production be due to the low levels of glutamineas shown here? It’s difficult to say.
What’s the link between viagra and nitric oxide?
Viagra (Sildenafil) works by boosting the amount of nitric oxide’s signalling partner cyclic Guanosine Monophosphate (cGMP) available in the penile tissue.
Viagra does that by blocking the enzyme that promotes the breakdown of cGMP. This action relatively makes the job of smooth muscle relaxation easy for the available nitric oxide.
So, a small rise in nitric oxide level will go a long way (no pun intended).
Smooth muscle relaxation in the penis results in vasodilation and a rush of blood to the penis. Happy days!
Bottomline: Arginine or citrulline supplements are not suitable viagra substitutes. You’re not going to get the same results. You may use these supplements for workout purposes, if you like.
What is Nitric Oxide dump?
Okay, let’s depart Geek Street and talk about natural nitric oxide boosting mechanisms. Because that’s what the nitric oxide dump is about.
The nitric oxide dump is an exercise routine that is designed to trigger the release of the nitric oxide from the lining of the blood vessel walls. Nitric oxide is usually stored in the endothelium (the lining of the blood vessel wall).
Once released from the endothelium, it gets to work diffusing across cell membranes. This results in the relaxation of the blood vessel wall leading to to what we call vasodilation.
The net result: lower blood pressure amongst other multitude of benefits.
Why is the exercise routine called Nitric oxide dump?
I know ‘dump’ not a flattering name.
But the simple reason it is called ‘dump’ is because we are initiating a process that dumps nearly all of the available nitric oxide in the “storage tanks” into the blood circulation in one go.
Do this exercise and you empty the the nitric oxide tanks, if you like. Don’t worry, the tanks will be re-filled.
What makes up the nitric oxide dump exercise routine?
There are 4 exercises that make up the nitric oxide routine and they are:
1) The Squat 2) Circular Arm Swing 3) Static Forward March 4) Shoulder Press
To save me describing them and how to perform them, watch video below. After all, they say a picture is worth a thousand words.
I recommend performing 20 reps for each of the 4 exercises. That makes a total of 80 reps. Those 80 reps constitute 1 set.
I also recommend 3 sets. By the time you have completed the 3 sets, you would have done 240 reps in total.
And guess what? It only takes 4 minutes. Just 4 minutes to perform. Very time-efficient.
What does the Nitric Oxide dump do?
As explained above, the nitric oxide dump exercises trigger the release of the stored notric oxide from the lining of the blood vessel walls. That causes a surge in nitric oxide levels in the blood circulation.
Because of the solubility of the nitric oxide, it diffuses across cells. In particular, within the cells of the blood vessel wall, nitric oxide signals the muscle cells around to relax. That’s why nitric oxide is referred to as endothelium-derived relaxing factor (EDRF).
This leads to vasodilation. The net result: lower blood pressure, better blood flow, better supply of oxygen and nutrients to tissues. Better health.
There’s more. Even though at the start of the nitric oxide dump exercise routine, the exercise is not involved in the production of the molecule, it actually stimulates the production of more nitric oxide.
Why…because as you use up the stored nitric oxide following the exercise routine, more nitric oxide production is stimulated. The used up nitric oxide has to be replaced.
So, performining the nitric oxide dump exercise routine boosts further production of this all-important substance in our body. Not a bad deal, is it?
Why do a nitric oxide dump?
You do the nitric oxide dump exercise routine for one principal reason. Release and boost your nitric oxide levels in your body. Simple.
I suppose your next question is; what does nitric oxide do or what are the benefits of nitric oxide?
Before I talk about the benefits of doing the Nitric oxide dump, I just want to say something about issue of dark chocolates boosting nitric oxide. Well, yes, you can achieve a boost with dark chocolate, within reason.
But you must ensure it is a 90% dark chocolate as opposed to anything below that. The reason is the higher the percentage, the more the cacao levels in the chocolate bar. Meaning less additives and less processed.
The more cacao in the product, the better the nitric oxide boosting potential of the dark chocolate product. I talk more about that here.
So, here are the benefits of boosting nitric oxide and also by implication benefits of the nitric oxide dump exercise:
Excellent for blood pressure control
Improves heart health
Enhanced oxygen delivery to your body cells
Improved mitochondrial (the power house of your cells) function
Improved blood circulation
Reduces stickiness of your blood, thereby preventing blood clots
Protects lean body mass
More benefits of doing nitric oxide dump exercise include:
Promotes fat loss
Reduces the risk of plaque formation on the walls of your arteries
Increases VO2 max thereby boosting oxygen utilisation during exercise
Improves exercise endurance
Slows down cognitive decline
Improves erectile dysfunction – a natural free viagra
Boosts immune system function
Reduces cell death
Calms down nerves
There are more advantages of having your nitric oxide levels boosted by performing the dump routine, but I’ll have to stop there for now.
Now, looking at all of these benefits, it’s time for me to do my evening session of nitric oxide dump routine. Won’t miss it for the world!
Ever wondered if you can use herbal teas for high blood pressure? On this page, you’re going to grab 8 herbal teas that will assist you in lowering your blood pressure. Drinking tea is beneficial for your health. It’s not just a pastime.
Of course, you can drink tea as an activity for enjoyment purposes. You may of course drink teas as an exercise of escapism, if you like; but you get so much more. Rather than go on social media for instance, you can drink tea to let the minutes slip by.
If anything you do both. Drink tea and be on social media, if that’s your thing.
But there’s something in the horizon in the world of teas. Herbal teas. Herbal teas are your new liquid foods.
Herbal teas have grown in popularity in the last couple of years. As we turn to alternative therapies for our health, herbal teas have taken a surge in sales and popularity.
Blood pressure management is no different. People with high blood pressure can use herbal teas to control their blood pressure. They work and some of them have been scientifically tested to prove their efficacy.
Conventional anti hypertensive medications work in different ways. So do these herbal teas for high blood pressure. They work differently. What does this mean?
It means to have the best results, you’ll need to drink different herbal teas to get your blood pressure under control. That is the best approach. We’re going to take advantage of the hypertensive reducing properties of these natural remedies for high blood pressure.
So, what herbal teas for high blood pressure?
Yes, let’s talk about the different herbal teas you can use to control high blood pressure. The idea is to use these herbal teas below as herbal remedies for blood pressure.
As I said in the video below, you shouldn’t rely on these herbal teas exclusively for your blood pressure control. You should use them as part of a wider strategy for your blood pressure control.
Below is a list of 8 herbal teas that you can use for blood pressure reduction.
Cat’s Claw Tea
This tea has a funny name. At first glance, you’d think it’s made from the claws of cats. Nothing could be further from the truth. I suppose it’s named cat’s claw because of the way the spikes project out of the Uncaria tree stem. There are 2 species of the plant from which cat’s claw tea is made.
One specie is called Uncaria Tormentosa and the other is Uncaria guianensis. Cat’s claw is a plant with powerful phytochemicals. Indeed, the phytochemicals are known to:
Have cancer fighting properties
Improve the filtering capability of our kidneys
That last function does have implications for our blood pressure. Because good filtration will contract our blood volume, getting rid of excess water and waste. This translates to lower blood pressure. So, cat’s claw tea is good for high blood pressure control.
Apart from that, cat’s claw tea has other medicinal uses. Cat’s claw tea is good for osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthrits, chronic fatigue syndrome, shingles, herpes virus infection etc.
I should point out that cat’s claw may interact with some blood pressure medications like Losartan, Captopril, Enalapril, Hydrochlorothiazide, Diltiazem, Valsartan, Amlodipne, Furosemide.
So, if you are using any of these medications you should be careful with cat’s claw tea because a combination of cat’s claw tea and these meds can make your blood pressure drop too low.
Indeed, if you are taking cat’s claw tea and you’re going for surgery, it’s a good idea to stop using cat’s claw tea for 10 days prior to surgery. Otherwise your anesthesiologist may have problems stabilizing your blood pressure when you’re under anaesthesia.
This is a tropical plant. Its botanical name is Hibiscus Sabdariffa. I grew up with this plant and I can confirm that hibiscus plant and it’s flowers are a beauty to behold. Even more beautiful in the mornings. What I didn’t know watching this beautiful plant is that; it has fairly good medicinal properties.
Yes, hibiscus tea has blood pressure lowering effect. And you should take advantage of this.
Hibiscus tea has a combined tarty and sweet flavour. This is coupled with an eye-catching lighter than beetroot red colour.
Does hibiscus tea reduce blood pressure?
Answer: Yes, it does. Hibiscus teas was put to the test in this study. Individuals with mild hypertension who were not any anti hypertensive medications were given hibiscus tea against a placebo group.
Over a 6-week period, the hibiscus group showed a reduction in both their systolic blood pressure (top number) and a reduction in their diastolic blood pressure as well.
The reduction in systolic blood pressure (the top number) was more and the higher the blood pressure, the better the results they got. Bear in mind that the participants in that study consumed 3 cups of hibiscus tea a day.
The researchers concluded that daily consumption of hibiscus tea should be encouraged as part of our diet because of its blood pressure lowering effect.
Hawthorn tea makes the list of herbal teas for high blood pressure. Hawthorn tea is listed in the Traditional Chinese Medicine food therapy as one of the foods to consume for good health and for blood pressure control.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the concept of food as medicine is based on the classification of foods as being a functional entity and a nutritional agent at the same time.
This review talks about the 4 pinciples of foods that make up traditional chinese medicine. It says:
“Four principles of Traditional Chinese Medicine food therapy including light eating, balancing the “hot” and “cold” nature of food, the harmony of the five flavors of food, and consistency between dietary intake and different health conditions, can be used to facilitate hypertension control”
As for hawthorn tea making the list, that is not surprising because the leaves, the berries as well as the flowers of the hawthorn plant are packed with phytochemicals that help to control blood pressure.
Apart from the fact that Hawthorn plant lowers blood pressure, it has also been used as a digestive aid, for menstrual problems as well as for anxiety.
Hawthorn tea has been shown to lower triglycerides and even cholesterol. With this protective effect on your circulatory system, the blood pressure reducing potential is not hard to see.
Talking of natural remedies for high blood pressure, chamomile plays a huge role too. This tea is made from the flowers of the chamomile plant.
There are 2 types. The Roman chamomile and the German Chamomile. Chamomile tea has flavonols and polyphenols.
So, phytochemicals such as apigenin, quercetin, patuletin as well as luteolin. Some of these phytochemicals in chamomile tea provide anxiety-relieving effect on your body. Chamomile tea does have mild laxative effect and also exhibits anti-iflammatory properties too.
Apart from relieving anxiety, chamomile tea is a sleep enhancer. Anything that enhances your sleep is a boost for your blood pressure control.
The plant from which this tea is made originates from South Africa. For the most part, rooibos tea is still grown and produced in South Africa and exported worldwide.
Rooibos tea also called Red Bush Tea has nearly the same colour as hibiscus tea but hibiscus tea has a deeper shade of red.
Before the rooibos tea comes off the production line, it undergoes oxidisation and fermentation. The oxidisation is similar to black tea production process. Even though both rooibos tea and black tea are oxidised, they do not orginate from the same plant. And Rooibos tea is caffeine free whilst black tea isn’t.
Rooibos tea has polyphenols and flavones. In particular, rooibos tea contains aspalathin. This aspalathin phytochemical has anti-inflammatory properties. Aspalathin reduces inflammation on blood vessel wall.
Another reason why Rooibos tea counts as one of the natural remedies for high blood pressure is it’s anti-anxiety effect. Controlling anxiety has hypertensive reducing effects.
This is one of the oldest herbal teas around. It’s been used for centuries. Lemon balm tea has been used as natural remedy for all sorts of ailments.
Conditions like menstrual cramps, bloating, gas issues, gerd, vomiting, thyroid issues, ADHD etc have been treated with lemon balm tea with varying success.
Lemon balm tea has an exciting lemon flavour. The botanical name of the plant from which lemon balm tea is made is melissa officinalis. Drinking this tea produces a sense of well being. A sense of calm.
This lemon balm tea is ideal for anyone who has issues with restlessness, anxiety and sleep issues. If you sleep well, you’re giving your blood pressure a helping hand.
If there’s one herbal tea that has had the highest surge in popularity, it’s green tea. And if there’s any herbal tea that has been abused as well, it’s green tea.
Green tea comes from the plant, Camellia Sinensis. Green tea is not an oxidized tea. The oxidized brother is black tea. But green tea has less caffeine in it than black tea. Both green tea and black tea come from the same plant.
The active ingredient in green tea is epigallocatechin-3-gallate. The flavonoids in green tea is what makes it a nice herbal tea for high blood pressure.
Here’s something you should know though.
If you’re going to use green tea for your blood pressure control, please make sure it is decaffeinated variety. Caffeine has a stiffening effect on your blood vessels, albeit a temporary effect.
Therefore, you don’t want the caffeinated green tea if you have high blood pressure. Decaffeinated green tea is what lowers blood pressure. Not the caffeinated variety.
As far as natural remedies go, the Arabs have used dandelion as a herb from as early as the 12th century. So, it’s got some pedigree behind it. The root of the dandelion can be used in foods as a root vegetable.
However, when not prepared fresh, the dandelion root can be dried up and used to make a refreshing cup of tea. This tea has a robust earthy flavour.
Dandelion root contains lots of phytochemicals like saponins, lutein, mucilage, coumarins along with minerals like calcium, potassium, manganese and iron. Dandelion tea also boasts Vitamin C, thiamin, Riboflavin and Niacin.
So, what gives dandelion root its anti hypertensive property?
The high level of potassium in dandelion root tea is what makes it a good blood pressure lowering tea.
How should you drink these herbal teas for high blood pressure?
Well, drink them just like any other herbal tea. I drink them as they are – plain. All the herbal teas I have mentioned here are caffeine-free.
You should not be drinking caffeinated teas if you desire hypertensive reducing advantage from them. Fortunately, the herbal teas here are all caffeine-free.
Add boiled water to the tea and allow the tea to brew for at least 5 minutes. The idea is to allow the nutrients and active ingredients in these teas to seep out before removing the tea bag.
You should look to drink as many of these blood pressure lowering teas as possible every day. Aim to drink 5 different types of these herbal teas per day.
Because I get busy during the day, one of the things I do in the evenings is to add 4 or 5 different teas into one cup. Brew as explained above and I enjoy all of my teas in one go. I call it Combination Tea Therapy.
That Combination Tea Therapy works for me. That way I don’t miss out on my daily tea therapy from the different herbal teas on this page.
Can you add sugar to these herbal teas for high blood pressure?
Ordinarily, the teas should be drunk plain. But I realize that some people may not like the original taste of each of these teas. So, you may add a healthy sugar alternative, if you want to sweeten these blood pressure herbal teas.
Please do not use refined sugar. If you have high blood pressure, refined sugar is something you should be looking to avoid anyway.
In the same vein, if you wish to add milk, that would be your choice. Milk and a healthy sugar substitute will not reduce their efficacy. But I prefer not to use any milk or milk substitute.
One question that bothers quite a lot of people is whether coffee does raise blood pressure or not. If you drink coffee, this is something you’d like to know the truth about.
And I am here to clear the confusion about coffee (and acffeinated tea) and blood pressure. And as a bonus you get to know if coffee will raise your blood sugar or not as well. How cool is that?
This is very important because millions of people drink coffee everyday. And millions of people all over the world have high blood pressure. In fact, high blood pressure is leading cause of health problems in a lot of countries.
Is it possible that habitual coffee drinking may be contributing to the problem we have regarding high blood pressure worldwide? It is not impossible to think along those lines.
But I suspect such reasoning might lead us the wrong path.
Yes, millions of people drink coffee habitually. Yes, millions of people have high blood pressure. But so do non-coffee drinkers too. Occassional coffeee drinkers or those who do not drink coffeee at all for whatever reason; also do suffer from high blood pressure.
Oh, let’s not forget. There are those who do not drink coffee but drink lots of tea with caffeine in them. Caffeine is not only present in coffee beans but also in a lot of tea leaves too.
With many people turning to natural remedies for their health problems, it is not surprising that herbal teas like green tea and black tea have become a staple in many homes.
For instance, some people use green tea to help with their diabetes and sugar levels. There are claims that green tea can prevent diabetes and help control glucose levels, hence.
Green tea, oolong tea, black tea all come from the same plant. The plant is called Camelia Sinensis. What makes those teas different is the way they are processed.
What binds those 3 teas together is that they all contain caffeine. But these teas end up with different amounts of caffeine through the processing. You can try an experiment by drinking these teas at different times and see how their caffeine content gives you that psychoactive kick. Just like the kick you get from coffee.
So, if we are going to clear the confusion on relationship between coffee and blood pressure, we might as well include caffeinated teas.
How about we look at what the science is actually saying.
Does coffee raise blood pressure?
May be we should asking the question, does caffeine raise blood pressure instead of asking about coffeee only.
Here are some salient facts.
Caffeine present in coffee and some teas is a vasoconstrictor. What does vasoconstriction mean in lay terms?
A vasoconstrictor is a substance capable of making the blood vessel wall less stretchy or less relaxed. You want your blood vessel walls to be relaxed as the blood is coursing through them.
Relaxed blood vessels have lower blood pressure because the compliant wall decreases the pressure within. A vasoconstrictor does the opposite of this. It makes the vessel wall (in this case, the wall of the arteries) stiffer and less compliant. That’s what a vasoconstrictor does.
Which means a vasoconstrictor, by having that pressor effect on the blood vessel wall, will raise your blood pressure. That’s just scientific fact. We can’t escape that. And caffeine is a vasoconstrictor.
Which means your coffee because it’s got caffeine in it; will have that same pressor effect I talked about. So, coffee will raise your blood pressure upon absorption of the caffeine in it. Fact!
But by how much?
Yes, coffee or caffeine will raise your blood pressure but how high should we expect the blood pressure to rise?
Well, good question but, even this query is not easy to give a ballpark figure. Because there are other variables to come into the mix and these variables confound the results of research too.
So factors like:
Other lifestyle factors
All of these affect how we respond to caffeine in general and coffee in particular.
This Study for instance tells us a systolic (top number) rise of 4 mmHg and 2.4 mmHg for diastolic (bottom number) is exepected for caffeine and 1.2 mmHg Systolic rise (top number) and 0.4 mmHg rise in diastolic (bottom number) should be expected for coffee.
Whereas, in this study, caffeine produced a systolic (top number) rise of 8 mmHg and 5.7 mmHg rise in diastolic blood pressure (bottom number).
Talking about caffeine means we can also talk about Green Tea and Black Tea because they both contain caffeine. In this study both the green tea and black tea produced a rise in blood pressure.
Black tea raised systolic blood pressure by up to 10.7 mmHg and 5.1 mmHg for diastolic compared to 5.5 mmHg systolic rise and 3.1 mmHg diastolic rise for green tea. This is not surprising because black tea has more caffeine than green tea.
So all in all, we should expect coffee to push up our blood pressure by around about 8 mmHg systolic (top number) and 4 mmHg rise in diastolic blood pressure.
It would appear that black tea will raise blood pressure more than coffee in comparison, looking at a lot of the studies I have examined. But of course, there are other factors to consider. Not least, being a habitual drinker.
Habitual coffee drinkers seem to develop some level of tolerance to the caffeine over time. This study tells us that the rise in blood pressure was seen in only non-habitual coffee drinkers when they looked at the effects of espresso on blood pressure.
Bottomline: Expect a rise in your blood pressure reading after consuming coffee or any caffeinated teas. The rise in BP is modest though.
How soon after should we expect a blood pressure rise with coffee?
Age, sex, habitual coffee consumption also need to be taken into consideration here. However, from the research the blood pressure effect begins at around about the 30 minutes mark. Certainly after 1 hour of coffee consumption, you should see the blood pressure effect of coffee quite vividly.
If you check your blood pressure at 30 minutes and 1 hour mark; you should know if your coffee has increased your blood pressure or not.
How long does the effect of coffee on blood pressure last?
The blood pressure effect of coffee will last an average of about 3 hours. It could be longer or less but it is exepected that the blood pressure rise initiated by coffee will last an average of 3 hours.
Does coffee have a long term damage on cardiovascular health?
Does drinking coffee produce any long term damage on your cardiovascular health? Not really. The blood pressure increasing effect of coffee (or caffeine) is in the short-term. When the subjects blood pressures were monitored over 24 hours in this study of tea, the caffeine effects on blood pressure were only seen in the acute phase but not in subsequent ambulatory BP readings.
This study also confirms the same theory too. It says that even though coffee does raise BP, there was “no association between longer-term coffee consumption and increased BP or between habitual coffee consumption and an increased risk of CVD”
In fact, this study tells us that coffee consumption is good for our cardiovascular health when drunk in moderate quantities. It says:
“Moderate coffee consumption was inversely significantly associated with CVD risk, with the lowest CVD risk at 3 to 5 cups per day, and heavy coffee consumption was not associated with elevated CVD risk”
So, we can safely say that in the long term, coffee consumption does not appear to cause any damage to our heart and blood vessels. Because the effect of coffee on blood pressure is temporary.
What is safe level of coffee (caffeine) consumption per day?
Safe level of coffee (caffeine) consumption levels is 300 – 400mg per day. Safe level of coffee (caffeine) consumption in simple terms amounts to 3 – 4 standard cups of coffee per day or 4 – 9 cups of tea per day
Does coffee raise blood sugar and insulin levels?
I know this topic is about coffee drinking and blood pressure but a quick word about coffee and blood sugar wouldn’t go amiss for completeness. The reason is most people who have concerns about their BP reading when they drink coffee also worry about the effect of coffee (caffeine) on their blood sugar levels too.
Not to mention that they may be concerned about coffee and their insulin level.
Truth be told, just like coffee and blood pressure studies, the results for coffee (caffeine) and blood sugar are mixed.
For instance, this meta-analysis tells us that caffeine intake increases blood glucose levels. Not just that, in majority of the studies they pooled together, the study results suggest that caffeine intake whether it be from coffee or tea prolongs the period of high blood sugar levels.
Some other reports like this one did not make any significant association either way, so long as the intake of coffee or caffeine was limited to 2.5 mg/kg body weight per day.
The same could be said for relationship between caffeine and insulin levels and insulin sensitivity. Some studies suggest caffeine (coffee) will raise insulin levels, other say coffee or caffeine has no effect on insulin.
Others like this one however indicate caffeine or coffee is good for type 2 diabetes. Meaning coffee has a protective effect and actually improves insulin sensitivity. So, consuming coffee means you need less insulin to drop your blood glucose levels.
Of course, what type of diet you’re on matters here. If you’re having a diet of refined carbs and refined sugar, I do not think drinking coffee is going to come to your rescue from spiralling blood sugars.
You can do a little experiment with coffee and your blood glucose levels. If you’re a diabetic, this should be pretty easy for you. Do the coffee-blood glucose experiment and see the effect of caffeine on your blood sugar.
I can tell you from my own personal experience that coffee does raise my blood gluose levels; even though I am no longer diabetic. I would imagine that there will be a corresponding rise in my insulin levels too when I drink coffee too.
If you have type 2 diabetes and you’re having difficulty with your diabetic blood sugar control, it may be reasonable to reduce your coffee consumption levels. Because everyone is different. The coffee may be sabotaging your glucose control.
High Blood Pressure and Coffee
Now, let me say a word about coffee and people with high blood pressure. Should you drink coffee if you have high blood pressure?
Of course, you can drink coffee if you have high blood pressure. But you need to be careful.
When your blood pressure rises with coffee use, the effect is not responsive to high blood pressure medications. It is a sustained effect that is not easily reversed with high blood pressure pills.
Secondly, the effect of coffee or caffeine on people with high blood pressure is much more dramatic compared to people without high blood pressure (non-hypertensives).
So, whereas, you may have a rise of 6 mmHg systolic in someone without high blood pressure, you who has high blood pressure may experience a systolic rise of 12 mmHg or higher.
Now remember, I said earlier on that BP increase with coffee does last up to 3 hours. Imagine, if you are one of those people who drinks several cups of coffee a day.
Imagine a situation where you’re constantly topping up your coffee fix when you are experiencing a caffeine crash every 4 hours or so. What do you think will happen?
Your elevated blood pressure reading will be sustained. Because whenever your blood pressure is beginning to settle, you spike it again with your top-up coffee.
Can you see how you can sabotage your blood pressure control efforts by your coffee drinking habits?
Here’s something else…
Everyone is different when it comes to coffee and blood pressure. How?
This study tell us that genetic differences play a huge role in how we respond to coffee. Some people will metabolise their caffeine very quickly. Others will deal with their caffeine load a lot slower.
Which one are you?
Obviously those fast metabolizers are at advantage because they can quickly off-load their caffeine and will have fewer adverse effects on their blood pressure.
A slow metabolizer (like myself) will have a longer and arguably more profound adverse effect on blood pressure. Now, you see why I said you need to exercise some care regarding blatant use of coffee and other caffeinated products, if you have hypertension.
What should you do if you suffer from hypertension and you are a coffee drinker?
1. Test yourself. Check yoour blood pressure 30 minutes, 60 minutes, 2 hours and 3 hours and even 4 hours after drinking your coffee. See how your blood pressure is behaving. If the effect on your blood pressure is still on-going over a 3-hour period, you’re definitely a slow metabolizer of caffeine.
2. If you experience blood pressure changes, switch to decaffeinated variety. This should apply to both coffee and tea. The more profound the caffeine effect on your blood pressure, the more drastic you should do this.
3. If you must drink caffeinated variety for whatever reason, limit yourself to just 1 cup a day.
Those tips should serve you well in your coffee and caffeine lifestyle journey. Hopefully I have successfully clarified the coffee and blood pressure confusion.
Answer: Yes, celery is good for high blood pressure.
Here’s the back story and the research that made the discovery.
There was a gentleman who was not keen on taking blood pressure medications. He ignored his doctor’s advice and decided to take matters into his own hands.
He had heard about the Chinese using celery as ancient treatment for all sorts of ailments. He figured high blood pressure would be one of the ailments that good old celery can tackle.
He therefore decided to eat a quarter of a pound of celery everyday for 2 weeks. He discovered that his blood pressure settled following his experiment.
Such a discovery was not going to be left unnoticed. Researchers pounced on the finding and decided to put it to the test.
The researchers got 30 participants who had mild to moderate high blood pressure and gave them celery seed extract over a 6-week period. The participants had an initial 7-day washout period.
The primary outcome measure for the study was the effect of celery on the blood pressure of the participants. There were secondary outcome measures like the effect of celery on LDL Cholesterol, HDL Cholesterol, free fatty acids etc.
For the purpose of this article, we are more interested in the effect of celery on high blood pressure.
In the study they found that celery did reduce blood pressure both at the 3-week point and the 6-week point.
The blood pressure reduction effect of the celery was more at the 6-week point.
The study not only shows that you can use celery for high blood pressure control but also demonstrated that the longer you use celery the better the response of your blood pressure.
So, how does celery help high blood pressure?
Rather than the question: how does does celery work to reduce high blood pressure; the query should be: what substance in celery offers this promising blood pressure lowering effect?
Celery exerts its blood pressure lowering potential through a phytochemical called 3-N-Butylphthalide (3NB).
This 3-N-Butylphthalide improves elasticity of blood vessel walls by getting them more relaxed. Relaxed blood vessel walls provide a wider vessel diameter which ultimately lowers the pressure inside the vessel.
3-N-Butylyphthalide also has a mild diuretic property which means it will make you pee just a little bit more. This diuretic effect contracts your blood volume. A contracted blood volume equates to lower blood pressure.
Conventional medications like Hydrochlorothiazide work through this diuretic mechanism.
This 3-N-Butylphthalide has also been shown to stop the progression of kidney damage caused by high blood pressure in rat experiments.
That’s not all.
Celery is also rich in Magnesium and Potassium. Both minerals have been proven to relax blood vessel wall as well.
How much celery should you eat to effectively lower your blood pressure?
So, how much celery should I take for high blood pressure. Valid question. I do not want you to leave with the impression that you’ll just eat one celery stalk and your blood pressure will become low forever. Not quite.
There’s more to it.
As you saw from the study, the consumption of celery continued over weeks. The gentleman who defied his doctor’s orders consuming celery instead of taking BP medications did that over a 2-week period too.
The point is; do not look at celery as a miracle plant that will secure lower blood pressure readings in a flash.
Rather you should see celery as part of a wider strategy for natural blood pressure reduction. Not a singular measure.
Now back to the amount of celery needed to reduce your blood pressure.
You need to eat about 4 stalks of celery to get your blood pressure reducing effect. That should equate to about 200 gm or 8 oz of celery. That’s how much celery you need to consume for high blood pressure.
Let me clarify this common question regarding high blood pressure and feeling hot. I often get asked: does high blood pressure make you hot?
So, I thought I might as well deal with the issue of high blood pressure causing you to feel hot all of a sudden right here on this page.
Largely speaking, high blood pressure is a symptomless condition. That is why hypertension is a nasty condition. High blood pressure creeps in on you. You get on with your life, going to work, doing your regular daily chores and you are completely oblivious to the fact that you may have hypertension.
You are probably under the impression that you should have symptoms like feeling hot when you have high blood pressure. And when you experience such symptoms, only then would you request a medical opinion to have your blood pressure checked. That would be a wrong approach.
The truth of the matter is; high blood pressure does not play ball like that. 8 out of 10 people with high blood pressure do not know they have the condition. This is because of what I said earlier. High blood pressure usually does not show up with easily recognisable symptoms for the most part.
Only occassionally does high blood pressure reveal itself with symptoms.
Does high blood pressure make you hot?
The straight answer to the question: does high blood pressure make you hot is; No, it doesn’t.
High blood pressure does not make you feel hot.
But some co-factors surrounding high blood pressure can make you feel hot. These co-factors may give the impression that the feeling of warmth is caused by the high blood pressure. That would be a wrong impression.
What do I mean by that?
Here are some of the co-factors that may make you feel hot if you have high blood pressure.
Menopause and Andropause
As men and women get older, andropause and menopause set in respectively. One of the classical symptoms of menopause is hot flashes (hot flushes). There are few women who go through menopause without experiencing hot flashes. Hot flashes can be distracting and uncomfortable.
It is said that some men do experience the same thing when their levels of testosterone drop. These group of men experience an intense feeling of warmth just like the menopausal women. The so-called low-T syndrome.
I should emphasize that a small percentage of men experience this problem of feeling hot but for the ladies, it’s almost universal. Hot flashes in women is caused by low estrogen levels.
So, what’s the connection between feeling hot in menopause and feeling hot with high blood pressure?
The connection is that the average age of menopause and andropause coincides with the age when most people with high blood pressure will be diagnosed. It is therefore easy to confuse the two condition.
If you are feeling hot and you suffer from high blood pressure and you are menopausal or andropausal, it is likely the cause of your warmth is the latter rather than the former.
Anxiety can present in a variety of ways. Quite apart from feeling keyed-up when you are anxious, you may experience a feeling of warmth all over. This can easily be confused with the high blood pressure as being the cause of your feeling hot.
An overactive thyroid is a condition where your thyroid gland is working overtime. Your thyroid gland over-produces the hormone called thyroxine. Thyroxine is a hormone that regulates our metabolism.
Excess thyroxine in circulation will result in metabolic overdrive. An extremely high metabolic rate will make you feel hot. This is another condition that may need to be excluded if you feel hot and have high blood pressure as well.
All medications have side effects. High blood pressure medications are no exception. if you are taking high blood pressure meds and you are feeling hot, there’s a good chance those high BP medications may be responsible for the problem.
The combination medications are worse. Combination medications for high blood pressure are those that have different modes of action put together into one single pill.
The idea of combination blood pressure drugs is to attack the hypertension from different angles with the convenience of taking just one single pill as opposed to taking 2 or 3 different pills.
For instance, Vaseretic which is enalapril and hydrochlorothiazide combined will make you feel hot. Lotrel which is a combination of amlodipine and benazepril will make you feel hot if you have high blood pressure.
Tribenzor which combines 3 different high blood pressure pills into one namely hydrochlorothiazide, amlodipine and olmesartan is another HBP med that may make you feel hot if you have high blood pressure.
Single high blood pressure meds aren’t left out either.
An example are the vasodilator drungs like Hydralazine and Minoxidil. They will most certainly make you feel hot with your high blood pressure. Just because of the way they work.
Vasodilators open up your blood vessels allowing a rush of blood through, if you like. That is bound to make you feel flushed and warm.
Also calcium-channel blockers like Adalat, Norvasc, Cardizem, Cardene, Dilacor XR, Tiazac, Plendil may make you feel hot too with your high blood pressure.
There is a good list of all of these drugs on the FDA website along with potential side effects here. Follow that link, if you would like to explore these medications and their side effects further.
Bottom line is:
High blood pressure will not make you feel hot but associated factors and conditions may make you feel hot.
Can high blood pressure make you tired? This is a common question that bothers people with high blood pressure.
The problem with tiredness and fatigue is that they are non-specific symptoms. Tiredness and fatigue can be caused by a huge array of medical and non-medical conditions.
It is therefore not surprising that tiredness can become a diagnostic nightmare for both you and your doctor.
For instance, it is very easy to blame your tiredness on menopause, if you are a woman who is post-menopausal. Of course, menopause may make you feel tired but the problem of feeling exhausted most of the time may well be due to your high blood pressure.
Men may blame constant tiredness on low testosterone which may well be the cause. But when you have high blood pressure, you may be barking at the wrong tree there blaming your testosterone level.
Your doctor being confused as well may well tell you “there’s no magic bullet” to solving the constant tiredness and fatigue. He might suggest you start getting used to it because he too has become helpless.
Sometimes as human beings we have a better ability to deal with situations when we know the reasons why we are having a particular symptom. Not knowing why is just as exhausting as the problem itself.
So, can high blood pressure make you tired?
You already probably know the answer from the forerunner to this but for avoidance of doubt, if you want the answer to the question: can high blood pressure make you tired?
The answer is; yes, high blood pressure can make you tired. Yes, high blood pressure can cause fatigue. Yes, high blood pressure can make you feel exhausted most of the time.
For the most part, people with high blood pressure tend not show any symptoms. Hence, if you are not someone already diagnosed with hypertension (high blood pressure) the finger-pointing exercise will probably be in the wrong direction.
This is particularly so if you are one of those with masked high blood pressure. These are individuals with high blood pressure that is not obvious to their doctor when their blood pressure is measured.
These folks have “normal blood pressure” in front of their doctor; but in actual fact they have high blood pressure in their day to day lives. The exact opposite of ‘white coat hypertension‘. The only way to diagnose these folks is through ambulatory 24-hour blood pressure monitoring.
Ambulatory blood pressure monitoring will reveal the aha moment. High blood pressure diagnosed. Cause of tiredness and fatigue uncovered. Problem solved.
It will be unusual to talk about the relationship between tiredness and high blood pressure without mentioning the other symptoms of high blood pressure.
As I said earlier on, hypertension (high blood pressure) is usually without symptoms in the vast majority of people with the disease. But one or two symptoms will lead your physician to suspect high blood pressure as the cause of your problem.
Some symptoms of high blood pressure will include:
We have already established that lethargy, fatigue, feeling tired all the time, are some of the symptoms of high blood pressure.
In fact, in older folks, the problem of fatigue can be so bad, they find it difficult to have a productive day. That can make for a frustrating experience. But how does high blood pressure cause fatigue?
High blood pressure causes tiredness through a variety of ways.
The high blood pressure itself
The high blood pressure medicines can cause tiredness
High blood pressure condition itself
When you have high blood pressure, it means there’s relative narrowing of your blood vessels. Your blood vessels have stiffer walls. Meaning your blood vessels aren’t very compliant to the rush of blood coming through from the heart.
With this relative narrowing and hardening of your blood vessels, the flow of blood through the vessels is sub-optimal. You need an unimpeded flow of blood through your vessels to bathe your cells.
If the flow of blood is not free, then the supply of oxygen and nutrients will be sub-optimal. This relative deprivation of rich oxygen and nutrients to your tissues inclusive of your muscles will make you feel tired, fatigued and lethargic.
Because sup-optimal supply of nutrients and oxygen means sub-optimal metabolism.
So, it is not unusual for someone with high blood pressure to feel exhausted most of the time.
The high blood pressure medicines can cause tiredness
High blood pressure is one disease where both the diseaseand the treatment can cause the same symptom(s). How bizarre.
For instance, high blood pressure can cause erectile dysfunction. At the same time, the medications used for the treatment of high blood pressure can cause the same erectile dysfunction. Sad, isn’t it?
The same thing applies to tiredness and fatigue. Just like high blood pressure can make you feel tired, so can the medications used for the treatment of high blood pressure.
One of the commonest complaints from people on high blood pressure medications is feeling tired and having low energy.
This problem of fatigue with high blood pressure medications is particularly so at the start of treatment and when a new medication had just been added to an existing one.
Blood pressure medications are a pain in the backside. Just as they save lives, they can make one’s life miserable as well.
How do blood pressure medications make you feel tired?
Some blood pressure meds like diuretics also called water pills, work by contracting your blood volume. They make you pee more. This reduces what we call the pre-load of the heart. It reduces the amount of ‘fluid work’ the heart has to do.
In doing so, these diuretics like Lasix, Thiazides may unintentionally make you lose electrolytes like potassium. A low potassium in the body is a guaranteed way to feel lethargic all day. Not what you want.
The beta blockers, like Atenolol, Bisoprolol, Propanolol, slow down your heart rate and reduce your heart’s output. This mode of action might not be liked by your body. The net result being; feeling tired all the time.
Centrally acting blood pressure medications like Clonidine, Methyl dopa, depress the central nervous system. With a mode of action like this, it is little wonder if you are taking one of these medications, you feel lethargic all the time. You need your central nervous system to be ‘firing on all cylinders’ for you to have the right energy levels.
So, if you are someone who always wonders why you feel so tired with your BP, your blood pressure medications could be playing havoc with your current low energy problem.
Yes, it’s nice to have your blood pressure under control but this may come at a price. Fatigue.
This is linked with some of the causes of high blood pressure.
Are you overweight? Being overweight does not help your blood pressure control. Even though your hypertension can cause your fatigue, problems related to weight issue can exacerbate your tiredness.
A lot of people overweight especially if obese have sleep apnea. Sleep apnea leads to poor sleep. Poor sleep is neither good for your physical nor your mental health. Poor sleep from sleep apnea will certainly make you tired practically everyday.
Is your diet unhealthy? Eating heavily processed meals may give you the buzz of yummy tasty food but you pay the price by getting tired as this will make your blood pressure control a lot harder.
The same thing applies to your level of physical activity. If you are not physically active, you may gain weight.
But beyond weight gain issues, not getting enough physical activity is a recipe for stubborn pressure which in turn will make you feel tired. Fatigue which may be made worsened further by your blood pressure meds.
So, it is clear as daylight. High blood pressure can make you tired.
But all is not lost. If you are having high blood pressure fatigue issues, have a chat with your physician. Between the two of you, a management plan can be drawn up.
And you could have a resolution. The resolution won’t be swift but it will happen…eventually.
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