Meditation helps avoid side-effects that could be caused to patients who are on regular anti-blood pressure medicines, according to studies
Among the many preventive measures that are often prescribed for hypertension, Transcendental Mediation (TM) has proven its worth in controlling hypertension, says Internal Medicine specialist, Dr. Vinod Kumar Bhargava.
Several scientific studies taken up in the recent past have shown that meditation does have a positive impact in reducing blood pressure, he said.
While delivering a talk on ‘Hypertension: New Guidelines for Management’, organised by Medically Aware and Responsible Citizens of Hyderabad (MARCH) on Sunday, Dr. Bhargava pointed out that TM has additional benefits too. “It has also been proven that meditation helps avoid side-effects that could be caused to patients who are on regular anti-blood pressure medicines,” he said.
Any kind of meditative exercise is beneficial, the doctor explained. “Pranayama is another kind of breathing exercise that has a very positive impact in controlling blood pressure. I also observed that patients who take up meditative exercise such as regular reading of religious scriptures have their hypertension under control,” Dr. Bhargava said. In his talk, the Dr. Bhargava pointed out that ideally consumption of salt among hypertensive patients in India should not exceed 5 grams per day. “It is difficult to maintain this level. But, I would advise the hypertensive to completely avoid consuming chutneys, pickles and papad. In turn, they can take more vegetables and fruits which contains potassium needed for blood pressure patients,” he said.
Potassium helps in getting rid of sodium (salt) from the body. “More potassium means less sodium or salt but patients should only take naturally occurring potassium in vegetables and fruits. A bowl of fruit per day is enough to replenish potassium levels,” he said. Ideally, youngsters above 18 years should check for their BP levels at least once in three years and those above 30 years should do the same once a year. “Those above 35 years should check their blood pressure levels at least once in six months. More than 60 per cent of hypertension patients do not have symptoms and that’s why, persons above 35 years, should be vigilant,” he suggested.