Originally Posted by ollinger
I use atenolol with good effect. A caution about managing your own blood pressure: control needs to be 24 hours a day. Recent medical data suggest that NOCTURNAL hypertension is more predictive of stroke risk than daytime blood pressure. A patient of mine thought he was doing just fine managing his blood pressure with some herbs and then discovered when he had a sleep study that his BP was spiking quite high at night. Unless you know that what you're using works 24 hours a day, you're putting yourself in considerable jeopardy.
You also can spell Aten right unlike me. My doctor tells me that Aten the beta blocker has been superseded by better medicines and she is keeping me on that only because I respond well to it (and so does my father). BTW the generic version I get in the local pharmacy here turns out be manufactured in India, probably by Cipla.
For non-doctors, lisinopril or zestril is an ACE inhibitor and my doctor places more importance on that.
There seems to be only one herb which has been shown to be effective - Ashwagandha, which has been taken for 1000s of years. Its name is <something> somnifera, so you can guess. My father has done much research on this, and advises me never to rely on herbs for hypertension - only "modern" medicine works. The most famous Ayurvedic medicine is Mukta Vati, a mixture of herbs, which both my brother-in-law and I tried for a year. He reached the same conclusion I did - it makes a good laxative. Yet millions take it faithfully.
In the yoga literature, the belief is that stress and shallow breathing is the root cause of blood pressure. Breathing exercises (pranayama) is supposed to be the cure. Regardless of whether it cures, I am certain that it will help a lot. Modern life is stressful, and we hold in our breaths and breathe in a shallow manner. This is because we are always waiting for something to finish. Like right now I was holding my breath because typing irritates me. According to one theory, humans are historically made for stress followed by relief. Modern life does not offer the release part.
That is why in tennis inhale-exhale (or Sharapova shrieking) is taught and we are told not to hold our breaths through the point. I strongly believe that if this is practiced all the time, hypertension will be drastically reduced.