We all know about treating high blood pressure with exercise and medication. But there are a few other tricks you might not have tried yet. Here's a list of six good ones from Prevention Magazine.
1. Get more sun. A new study found that being exposed to sunlight can lower your blood pressure, because it increases the production of nitric oxide, and that will dilate your blood vessels. And it's also just relaxing.
2. Go to the zoo. Having a pet can help keep your blood pressure low, but just watching animals at the zoo can have the same effect. It just triggers good emotions, like spending time with a friend.
3. Volunteer. A study found that people who volunteer four hours a week are less likely to develop high blood pressure. You tend to be less stressed out, and to have more social connections.
4. Give more hugs. According to studies, women who hug their partner more frequently have lower blood pressure. Physical closeness can release hormones that help you feel calmer.
5. Listen to music. One study found that listening to Mozart lowered people's blood pressure more than sitting in complete silence. And Japanese researchers found that people who sang and stretched to music had big decreases in blood pressure.
6. Squeeze stuff. Those spring-loaded hand grips, or one of those stress balls that feel like really tough putty. After your hand muscles contract, your heart pumps more blood to them, which just improves your circulation overall.