Hawthorn to Lower Blood Pressure
You might have been passing hawthorn trees every day but never thought of using hawthorn to lower blood pressure.
Hawthorns are short trees, or actually tall shrubs, that often grow beside rivers or at the edges of meadows and fields, in sunny wooded areas. They look quite distinctive – gnarled and thorny, with small bushy leaves, a bit like oak leaves in shape. They’re one of the first trees to flower in the spring, with creamy white blossoms, which then become clusters of dark red berry-like fruits in the fall.
In Scottish and Irish folklore, the hawthorn tree is associated with fairies, marking the entrance to the ‘Otherworld’, and was once said to heal a broken heart. Although in modern times its fairy associations may have weakened, it is now once more associated with healing the heart.
How does hawthorn work to lower blood pressure?
It’s been at least two thousand years that people have been using hawthorn to lower blood pressure, as it was used in various cultures around the world as a heart tonic.
Hawthorn’s Latin name, Crataegus, means strength, and hawthorn is known to strengthen the heart, as well as being good for the cardiovascular system as a whole: studies show that hawthorn increases the flow of blood in the heart, strengthens its muscle and nerve signals, improves circulation in general, and lowers blood pressure in turn.
Hawthorn is also rich in antioxidants – especially flavonoids – which act to relax the blood vessels around the heart and elsewhere in the body, improve blood flow and protect the heart and blood vessels from damage and fat build-up, keeping them in healthy condition.
The effects of hawthorn to lower blood pressure are indirect as well: it can lower the levels of cholesterol and fats in the blood, and is also known for its relaxing or sedative effect, making it helpful to counter stress, nerves, anxiety, and general tension. This relates to its traditional use healing emotional issues of the heart – it can soothe and ease, as well as strengthen and protect.
Start taking hawthorn, and keep taking it
The beneficial effects of taking hawthorn to lower blood pressure and help the cardiovascular system are not immediate though. The effect is cumulative, building up gradually, so may take over a month to be noticeable. For example, studies from the US and Iran show taking hawthorn significantly reduced blood pressure – over several months.
So start taking hawthorn now – and keep taking it. It’s all around a good tonic for your heart, blood vessels, and nerves, and its effects get stronger with sustained regular use.
How to take hawthorn to lower blood pressure
The leaves, flowers and fruits (haws) of the hawthorn are all edible and full of the good stuff.
The leaves of the hawthorn, when still tender, are lovely in spring salads, and the flowers are edible too – and you can make a tea from them. However, the easiest way to take hawthorn to lower blood pressure is to take hawthorn in the form of capsules or liquid tinctures.
A preparation that’s made using the whole plant is the best thing, to get the maximum effectiveness of all the substances of hawthorn acting together. However, most capsules and tinctures on the market are made either from the berries or the leaves and flowers. The leaves and flowers are believed to contain more of the antioxidants than the berries, so aim for those, although any good quality hawthorn supplement will be good
There are no official recommendations for the amounts, although studies have safely given participants up to 1800mg a day. Advocates of hawthorn generally recommend about 100-250mg of a hawthorn supplement, with at least 10% procyanidins (a key group of antioxidants), two or three times a day.
For example, Nature’s Way make ‘Heart Care’ tablets with 80mg hawthorn extract from the leaf and flower and lots of procyanidins, so that could be a good starting point.
Alistrol natural supplement containing hawthorn
There’s also a supplement called Alistrol which includes hawthorn, as well as three other natural ingredients with blood pressure-lowering properties.
See our Alistrol review for more details (and links to buy): Alistrol review (supplement with hawthorn)
You can buy hawthorn tinctures in some health food shops. However, if you’re near any hawthorn trees, you can easily make your own. This is what I do, being lucky enough to live close to many hawthorn trees. You can pick the flowers in the May/early June and the berries in late September/October.
Place the berries and/or flowers in a jar and fill the jar with a spirit of 50% to 60% volume alcohol. Strong vodka is usually recommended but I have used moonshine with good results. Leave the mixture for 2 – 4 weeks out of direct sunlight. Then strain it and dispose of the solid stuff. Store the tincture in small dark bottles with a dropper for easy access and use.
See my video about how to make your own hawthorn tincture
Then take 25-30 drops in a glass of water up to three times a day. For tinctures it’s best to take it about 15 minutes before eating, and hold it in your mouth for a few seconds, as your saliva helps it be absorbed.
And think about how happy your heart is 🙂
PLEASE NOTE: Hawthorn can interact with some medications
Hawthorn is known to interact with some blood pressure and heart medications (including beta-blockers, calcium channel-blockers and digoxin). Be sure to check with your doctor before starting to take hawthorn if you’re on prescription medications.
Lower your blood pressure naturally (for less cost)
In addition to hawthorn, there is a large choice of affordable natural ingredients that lower blood pressure. Many of these spices, herbs, berries, fruits, grains, vegetables, meats and drinks are available in local stores.
Of course there are other factors beyond diet (like fitness and stress) that affects your blood pressure. So the best way to lower your blood pressure without drugs is to apply a broader approach – covering all causes and cures with natural home-based remedies.
These progressive steps are based on the principle that positive incremental change is always best in health matters.
Each chapter will take you further along the road of greater vigour and peace of mind (and a healthy blood pressure).
Click on the link below for more information:
P.S. This guide shows you how to lower your blood pressure permanently and naturally without side-effects or complications.
Follow each step to get your blood pressure back in balance.
Choose between a wide range of delicious foods that reduce your blood pressure. Include a number of mental and physical exercises in your schedule for both relaxation and invigoration.
Following this guide will reduce, and in time, eliminate your need for blood pressure lowering medications.
This is a guide for good healthy living and will be beneficial for all – even if you don’t currently suffer from high blood pressure.
To download a sample of the guide to your computer right now click here and scroll to the bottom of the page for the download link.