High Blood Pressure – Why and How

why is my blood pressure high?

Simon Foster (me!)

I have been diagnosed with blood pressure 195/120. That’s not good. 120/85 is considered “normal”.

So the two questions are:

  1. Why is my blood pressure high?
  2. And how do I get it back down?

Neither of these questions have simple staightforward answers or solutions.


Why is my blood pressure high?

The best answer I can come up with for question 1 is ‘genetics’. What else could it be? I am not obese. I’m not a chain smoking alcholic. I live a reasonable stress-free life. My diet has been, not great perhaps, but not terrible either. So it must be genetics. And possibly built up but hidden emotional stress, I sometimes wonder.


How do I get my blood pressure down?

The solution? Now that’s really the sixty-four thousand dollar question. One thing is for sure – those professing to know the cure have very different and even conflicting opinions.

But, from my research into this, I’d say there are three basic approaches:

  1. Change / addition to diet (possibly including ingesting prescription drugs)
  2. Physical exercises
  3. Mental exercises

All ‘remedies’ I’ve accessed and tried so far can be summed up with one or more of these approaches.

I initially took an ACE inhibitor my doctor prescribed. After one month that showed zero results, except a persistent uncomfortable cough. So I started researching and using other alternative approaches.

I found some decent online guides into lowering blood pressure naturally, such as Get Natural! by Kevin Riley. I followed their advice on making some adjustments to my diet. (You can read more about this here: How I used diet and exercise to lower my blood pressure.)

The other approach I’m experimenting with is breathing exercises that can be performed with the assistance of audio tracks. (I’m mainly using David O’Hara’s Breatheasy program.) They’re simple enough to perform and don’t take up too much time.

My final conclusion as to they are working or just a waste of time is not yet in. But first indications are that they may be valid.

But is it sustainable? Or just a temporary relief? The verdict is out at the moment.

It would be great to hear from other high blood pressure sufferers if they have tried similar approaches and what the results were – positive and/or negative.

I’d also like to hear of other kinds of treatment successes. I hopes someone will read this someday.

Now I’m rambling.

My next post I’ll share details of the things I’m trying and the results – real and percieved.

Take care,



UPDATE 2017: Good news and bad news!

The bad news is that the products I mentioned above, which helped me lower my blood pressure, are no longer available. The good news is that I have created my own versions which you can use instead.

avoid false blood pressure readings and lower blood pressure naturallyFirstly, my researcher partner and I have compiled a comprehensive guide to lowering your blood pressure:  Lower Your Blood Pressure Naturally – The Complete 9 Step Guide  

The guide covers changes in diet, being more active, and getting your stress levels down.

There’s information on all the tasty foods and drinks you can think of which will help decrease your blood pressure, as well as a few recipe ideas. (There’s plenty choice, and plenty good stuff – lowering your blood pressure naturally is not a life of denial).

There are also helpful tips on ways to be more active in your day to day life, without having to squeeze into lycra and go to the gym (unless you want to). And there are tried-and-tested techniques for relaxation and stress reduction. After all, who doesn’t want to be less tired and strained?

There’s a lot in there! But to make it simple, we’ve organised the guide into nine easy-to-follow steps. This means you can do one step at a time, at whatever pace suits you.

Just click on the picture for more information and/or to order.

Guided slow breathing for lower blood pressure

The other product which is no longer available is David O’Hara’s guided slow breathing tracks. Again, I have created my own (with the help of a musician and sound engineer). You can listen to some sound samples here: guided slow breathing tracks

At the moment, I’m giving away the full set of slow breathing audio tracks with the guide, so you can start using both to get to grips with your high blood pressure right away.

Good luck! And keep me posted on how it goes for you!




  • 22.05.2017 Hi Simon, please keep posting I read your feeds regularly also adding the date would be helpful for me as I am unsure when the above article was written. My name is Whaitaima and I was born 1964.
    I have a long history with health issues including a brain haemorrage in 2002. Since then or maybe before then as well (undure) my blood pressure is generally between 180 and 240 ( Systolic #). Earlier this month I had a 3 day and 2 night hospital stay to take part in a Saline Infusion Test. SIT for short. The test was to determine whether I had Primary Aldosterone characterised by excessive secretion of aldosterone from the adrenal glands. Overproduction leads to retention of sodium and loss of potassium resulting in high blood pressure. The diagnosis confirms that I have high sodium levels and low potassium levels but they are unsure if I have PA 100%. This website is informative and has very relevant articles. I have copies of the breathing excercises that I have used regularly but I do find that slow exhalation rather than the rythmical breathing excercises feels better. I consciously buy food that is known and recommended to lower blood pressure including unprocessed foods alot of nuts, fruit and we eat home grown garden vegies regularly. I also take Hawthorn essence made by plant rythmn essences here in NZ when I can afford it. I try very hard to practise Qi Gong excercises daily. My husband and I have a small family business building, writing, singing and performing puppet shows for primary and kindergarten children touring nationally and internationally. I have been taking beta-blockers since November 2016. Well actually …… I took beta blockers for 3 years after the brain haemorrage then decided that I didnt need them as I had a persistent dry hacking cough and I was going to manage my own health. I also bought a blood pressure monitor earlier this year which has shocked me into seriously taking responsibility for my own body. This is ongoing for me and I also would like to read other stories re: BP. Take care Simon and everyone out there living our lives to the best of our abilities, Blessings of Love and Light …..

  • Hi Whaitaima,

    This is Simon’s partner, Alison. Thanks for getting in touch! It’s always good to hear how other folk are getting on with handling their high blood pressure. It sounds like you’ve had a lot to deal with but that you’re doing a lot of good stuff to get healthier.

    As for the date, I just checked and this article was originally published on April 29th 2009, not long after the website was started! (I’ve just updated it a wee bit actually.) That’s 8 years ago, and Simon’s blood pressure is consistently lower now. So changing your diet and breathing exercises have worked for him 🙂 He is also a big believer in having your own blood pressure monitor and still checks his own BP regularly.

    Anyway, we’re both really glad you’re finding our website useful and all the best with your health!
    Take care, Alison

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