9 Lifestyle Hacks to Control Hypertension as told by holistic Nutritionist-Dietitian Julianne Stefani Malong, RND, ACE-CPT - Nuthera® Meal Plans

9 Lifestyle Hacks to Control Hypertension

1 out of 4 Filipinos have hypertension. 

If this sounds like an unimpressive statistic, let me elaborate. 1 out of 4 people you know may have or is bound to have high blood pressure which is a major risk factor for heart attack and stroke.  

How major? According to WHO, hypertension causes approximately 96% of deaths worldwide – 51% due to stroke and 45% due to heart disease. Aside from these serial killers, hypertension also contributes to other devastating diseases such blindness, and the most tragic of them all kidney failure. 

But this tragedy comes with the greatest good news: hypertension is 100% preventable and manageable. Here are 9 lifestyle hacks you can do to stay under pressure.”


1. Test regularly 

If no one can do it for you at home, you may check out your local drugstore, gym, or clinic and befriend the staff for free blood pressure check-ins. 

The more you know about where you stand, the easier it will be to make sure it’s on the safe side which means keeping it under 120 mmHG and 80 mmHg for systolic and diastolic blood pressure. 

Here’s our general suggestion on how often you should check your blood pressure: 

      • 20-39 monthly 
      • 40-59 weekly 
      • 60+ 2-4 times a week


2. Get rid of table salt

Table salt is not just those white salty crystals that you sprinkle over food. It includes other items you use as toppings or dips such as seasoning, ketchup, mayonnaise, cheese, and dressings.

In the Philippines some popular table salt options are fish sauce, soy sauce, and fermented shrimp paste. 

It is not recommended to have a full bottle of these condiments on your dining table, first, because it is so easy to go overboard with them, and second, the food served usually has more than enough sodium – you just have to get used to the lighter and cleaner flavors of the main ingredients. 

3. Go natural 

Farm fresh products have less sodium than their processed counterparts, this is because salt is the most popular preservative used to prolong shelf life.

Going natural means being more in touch with your food because knowing what goes into your body gives you more control over your health outcomes. 

If the barrier for going natural is convenience and spoilage of fresh goods, it is better to purchase frozen goods rather than their canned or bottled counterparts. 










Red Tomato 



Chicken Breast  







4. Eat more fiber 

    The more you weigh, the more blood you need to supply oxygen and nutrients to your tissues. This increase in blood volume circulated through your blood vessels increases the pressure on your artery walls. This is why losing at least 7% of excess weight already shows significant changes in blood pressure. 

    The key to weight loss is not actually eating less but eating more of the good stuff – colorful antioxidant rich vegetables! Eating more low glycemic carbs prior to your entree makes you feel full without giving you the caloric load. These low glycemic carbs are also rich in betaglucans which are linked to a reduction in plasma cholesterol and insulin resistance. 

    5. Increase potassium intake

    Evidence shows that increasing potassium intake significantly reduces blood pressure since it balances out the effects of sodium. However, our usual diet has loads of sodium and negligible levels of potassium. 

    Potassium is found in a variety of unrefined foods, including beans and peas, nuts, leafy vegetables such as spinach, cabbage and parsley, and fruits such as bananas, papayas and dates. Food processing significantly reduces the amount of potassium hence a diet high in processed food and low in fresh fruits and vegetables translate to a higher risk of developing hypertension. 

    6. Take deep breaths

      Our fast-paced lifestyle keeps us uptight and susceptible to stress. And whenever we are stressed, the fight-or-flight cascade starts which includes the narrowing of the arteries caused by cortisol and increase in heart rate caused by epinephrine. This forces blood to be pumped harder and faster – imagine the wear this causes your cardiovascular system on a daily basis! 

      This is why meditation and practicing mindfulness has long been known to better your blood pressure level. Allocating at least 2-3 hours of unplugged and dedicated stress relief such as scheduled meditation, aromatherapy, or massage can do wonders for your health.

      7. Cardio + yoga 

        Keeping your blood pressure low is one thing. Keeping your cardiovascular system strong is another. For someone with a busy lifestyle, adding a session of 40-minutes of moderate cardio, and two sessions of 40-minutes of Youtube-guided yoga per week should be enough to maintain your current cardiovascular health. 

        Cardio allows you to regularly challenge your heart – in a controlled way – to prepare it for high stress situations. Yoga allows you to take it slow and steady, allowing you to breathe into your muscles while practicing endurance during flows and poses. 

        8. Weight training 

          If yoga gets your blood flowing in a nice and steady way, doing multi-joint, or compound weight lifting exercises takes it up a notch. This really gets a lot of blood flowing, making for a stronger heart, and more relaxed yet enduring blood vessels. 

          For starters, practice squats, pushups, lunges, and deadlifts without weights – just think about doing it with a tight core and proper form first. Then gradually add on the weights. 

          9. Laugh more 

            Learning to relax, laugh, and be happier in general will make you healthier. Cortisol levels in the happiest individuals are found to be 32% lower than for unhappy individuals. And regardless of age, cholesterol levels, and blood pressure, this 10-year study tells us that happiness can put you and your loved ones at 22% decreased risk for coronary heart disease. 

            Happier individuals tend to adhere to heart-healthy behaviors such as maintaining regular physical activity, avoiding smoking, and observing healthy eating habits. This just shows that a true understanding of “living life to the fullest” has longevity and vitality as a winning side-effect. 

            Hypertension might seem like a lost case since a lot of people have it, but on a different perspective, the high prevalence of hypertension might be because a lot of people are not educated enough on the simple yet cumulative lifestyle hacks that can be changed to control your blood pressure and prevent its nasty complications. 

            The emergence of the YOLO mindset in this generation is very deceiving because it pushes the idea of doing anything what to make you happy, but at what cost? We need to go back to looking at life at a more long-term perspective, correcting our priorities such as staying healthy for our loved ones rather than giving into short term pleasures of hitting up a smoke or indulging in unhealthy treats. 

            I know that these life hacks may sound easy but the discipline of choosing to do them every single day is the hard part; This is the part where NUTHERA got your back. We make eating so healthy and convenient that enrolling in any of our meal programs immediately ticks 4 out of 9 life hacks, giving you enough time to take care of the rest. 


            Click here to found out which meal plan is the best for you.

            Julianne Stefani Malong, RND, ACE-CPT

            Julianne is a nutritionist-dietitian and a holistic lifestyle coach specializing in behavior coaching for weight management. She helps people turn complex fitness facts into simple life hacks for sustainable long-term change.