If you are looking for additional support to your high blood pressure medications, you can look to the research studies on magnesium to find some pretty neat outcomes.
Magnesium has been shown to act similar to a calcium channel blocker (aka Verapamil or Amlodipine if you’re checking your medicine cabinet now), as well as a potent smooth muscle relaxant that can allow your arteries to open up wider and allow more blood to flow through. With your arteries open wide, your heart doesn't have to pump as hard to get the blood out to your body!
Some studies have shown magnesium can lower blood pressure as much as 5 points (mmHg) on the top number and 3 points (mmHg) on the bottom number1. Considering that a reduction in blood pressure by 5mmHg can reduce stroke deaths by 14% and heart disease deaths by 9%2, I would say magnesium could be a very safe and effective additive therapy to existing blood pressure lowering medication.
When taking a Naturopathic approach to lowering blood pressure, it’s not just substituting a pharmaceutical for a ‘natural’ version of the same pill. You have to treat the whole person, which means tackling the blood pressure from many different angles and ultimately reducing your need for the pharmaceutical.
When you’re my patient, here are some questions I’ll ask that give us a great place to start:
- What dietary changes that can be made to lower your blood pressure?
Eating a diet that is full of colorful vegetables, quality protein sources, and healthy fats help to decrease inflammation. By decreasing inflammation, you decrease the amount of plaque building up and ultimately reduce the pressure necessary to push past those plaques.
- What lifestyle changes can be made to lower blood pressure?
Did you know that high amounts of stress can cause you to pee out your extra storage of magnesium? By adding in stress reduction methods, and encouraging proper stress response through adrenal support, you can improve blood pressures and magnesium storage. Doing your best to incorporate daily movement is also highly beneficial in blood pressure reduction. This doesn't mean just high intensity exercise; taking a 30-minute walk per day can also provide valuable reduction in pressures!
- What other personal health history is contributing to your high blood pressure?
Conditions such as iron deficiency anemia and testosterone deficiency also contribute to high blood pressure. We will take a thorough look at everything from your gut function to your mental-emotional health to start targeting the individualized reasons your blood pressure is elevated.
If you’re on the market for a quality magnesium supplement that will help to increase your magnesium stores, and provide valuable heart benefit try magnesium taurate, malate, glycinate or a chelated form (bisglycinate chelate). These forms are well absorbed by the gut, and are highly absorbable by the tissues to increase your magnesium stores.r
1. Houston M. The Role of Magnesium in Hypertension and Cardiovascular Disease. Journal of Clinical Hypertension 2011; 13(11): 843-847.
2. Whelton PK, He J, Appel LJ, Cutler JA, Havas S, Kotchen TA, Roccella EJ, Stout R, Vallbona C, Winston MC, Karimbakas J. Primary pre- vention of hypertension: clinical and public health advisory from the National High Blood Pressure Education Program. JAMA 2002; 288:1882–1888.