Hypertension, also known as high blood pressure, and hypertension-related disease is the leading cause of death & disability in developed societies. In the United States, each year, nearly 800,000 people suffer a stroke, of which hypertension is one of the most accurate predictors. Of those who suffer a stroke yearly, 140,000 of them die.
Congestive heart failure (670,000 people diagnosed each year) is the leading cause of hospitalization in people older than 65. Reducing blood pressure is the most effective strategy in treating and preventing heart failure - every 5 point decrease reduces the risk of heart failure by 24%.
Many other diseases such as a heart attack, aneurysm, kidney disease, type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, and even dementia are all related to high blood pressure.
Medications for hypertension are largely disappointing - increased death risk, numerous side effects, and low long-term benefit means that the risks of medications outweigh the benefits unless blood pressure reaches 160/100. And even when medications are used, the average drop is only about 12/6 points.
It turns out, the most effective way to lower blood pressure is actually through lifestyle changes rather than with medications.
Here is a list of some of the changes in order of effectiveness.
Vegetarian high-fiber diet lowers blood pressure by ~3/1 points
Reducing alcohol to 2 oz per week lowers blood pressure by ~5/3
Three times per week of aerobic exercise lowers blood pressure by ~7/7
Sodium restriction to ~ 1g per day lowers blood pressure by 16/9 points
Combination of low-fat, low-salt, vegan diet, and exercise lowers blood pressure by 17/13 points
Supervised Water-only fasting (Average of 11 days) and re-feeding with a vegan salt-oil-sugar free diet: lowers blood pressure by an average 37/13 points. (1)
For stage 1 hypertension (130-139/80-89), water-fasting was shown to lower pressure by 29/11 points.
For stage 2 hypertension (140-159/90-99) water-fasting was shown to lower pressure by 40/15 points.
For stage 3 hypertension(>160/100) water-fasting was shown to lower pressure by 60/17 points. (a)
Water-fasting is safe when done in a clinically supervised setting that is set up for water-fasting. Careful lead-in, monitoring and proper re-feeding before, during, and after a fast ensure safety and effectiveness for the patient. As long as a health-promoting diet is continued after the fast, patients will enjoy normal blood pressure and a healthy life.
At the Fasting Escape, a fasting program in Orange County, California, we accept guests who want to normalize their high blood pressure without the use of medications. The results we see are consistently outstanding. By using fasting to begin a new healthier way of living, guests are able to break-free from their disease and start fresh with renewed health & vitality.
If you've been told "You need to learn to live with your high blood pressure" or "You'll have to take these medications for the rest of your life" perhaps it's time to get your blood pressure under control and fast.
(a) Hypertension guidelines at the time of the study were split into 3 stages. Guidelines have been updated since then and now have two stages : Stage 1 (130-139/80-89) and Stage 2 (>140/90).
(1) Goldhamer, Lisle, Parpia, Anderson, Campbell Medically Supervised Water-Only Fasting in the Treatment of Hypertension Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics Volume 24 • Number 5 • June 2001