Lower Your Blood Pressure with Positive Emotions, Not Drugs

Despite what the so-called experts might say about the pursuit of happiness being no more than a shallow, trivial pursuit, a positive attitude certainly does wonders for keeping your blood pressure low, according to a new study.

Scientists measured the benefits of positive emotions on the health of more than 2,600 Hispanic seniors (age 65 and older), almost evenly split between both sexes. Using questionnaires, patients ranked their level of positive emotions on a 0-12 scale.

No surprise, higher scores -- meaning more positive emotions -- translated into lower blood pressure readings. Here's a benefit, I suspect, researchers didn't expect: The benefits of positive emotions were felt the strongest among patients who didn't take a hypertension drug.

The even better news here is that treating your emotions is only one of five important ways to normalize your blood pressure, safely and naturally. Other key treatments that have nothing to do with a drug:

Psychosomatic Medicine Vol. 68, No. 5, September-October 2006: 727-733

CNN.com October 18, 2006

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