High Blood Pressure – Causes and Yogic Techniques
Hypertension, also known as a ‘silent killer’ – is especially dangerous as it often has no specific warning signs or symptoms. High blood pressure causes the heart to work too hard and increases the risk of heart ailments. It is so dangerous that it can also lead to the damage of the eyes, kidneys, liver and the nervous system. Although genes play a role in the occurrence of hypertension, lifestyle habits play an important part in controlling this condition.
Causes of High Blood Pressure:
2. High-salt diets.
5. High caffeine consumption.
6. High cholesterol levels.
Physical activity is one of the most important steps for preventing and controlling high blood pressure. Those who are physically active have a 25% to 50% lower risk of developing hypertension. Regular exercise can reduce both systolic and diastolic blood pressure by an average of 10mm Hg.
Steps to keep your Blood Pressure checked
Low to moderate cardiovascular exercises should be practiced four to five days a week, for 30 to 60 minutes. Begin the exercise session with a gradual warm-up of 10 minutes.
5. Strength training exercises should not be done as they can elevate blood pressure.
6. Meditation helps calm the body and mind bringing them into a better state of balance.
7. You should sleep well. Sleep slows down the pulse and relaxes the body.
8. Take only 1 teaspoon of salt daily.
9. Eat fruits, vegetables and a low-fat diet.
10. Avoid too much caffeine.
Yogic techniques for controlling high blood pressure:
1. Bhramari Pranayama: The technique is as follows:
(a)Sit in padmasana or vajrasana.Close your eyes and take few deep breaths.
(b)Gently insert thumbs into ears and place fingers comfortably on your head. Keep mouth closed.
(d)Exhale slowly through your mouth (through the small gap between your teeth), making a rumbling sound by vibrating the lips. Allow the vibration to spread all over the head. Ensure that the exhalation is happening through the mouth and not the nose.
Cycle: Keep practising the above three steps in a rhythmic pattern. Try and see how many counts of inhalation you can do so that you can continue it for some time and not get tired. Do not over hold the breath; else your next round won’t be the same as the previous one.
Caution: People with severe throat problems or throat cancer should avoid this pranayama.Those with an ear infection should perform this only after the infection has been cured.
2. Om Chanting: Om or the primal ‘shabda’, pronounced ‘aum’, is the cosmic vibration. The joy of chanting unfurls the inner world! Chanting and singing stills the mind, dissolve worries, frees the voice and opens the heart!
The technique is as follows:
(a)Inhale and chant ‘a-u-m’ emphasizing on all three letters and chanting as long as there is breath left in your lungs. Chanting can be deep from the navel region.
(b)Aum can also be chanted mentally in any meditative posture, focusing between the brows or on breath.
3. Shavasana: The technique is as follows:
(a)Lie flat on back, head and body in a straight line, legs a little apart, arms by side a little away from body, palms facing up, fingers relaxed.
(b)Close your eyes relax body and focus on your breathing.
(c)Let breathing be slower, deeper, and more rhythmic.
(d)Each time you exhale, let the whole body relax.
(e)Count backwards every exhalation, from 11 to 1.