WHAT ARE THE NATURAL ALTERNATIVES TO CLONIDINE

Clonidine is taken to reduce high level of blood pressure. It keeps a few brain chemicals – such as renin, norepinephrine, etc. – under greater control. Such inhibiting action helps ease your blood vessels and keep pressure level within limits. But, in some people, this drug can cause a few allergies or undesired side effects. Common among such adverse effects is – difficulties to pass stools, tiredness, nausea or vomiting, inflammation of oral or facial parts. These effects can be more pronounced if you have prior allergies to clonidine and / or its active ingredients. In such cases, it is a wise thing to take safer alternatives. Do you know the naturally-available alternatives to clonidine? Knowledge of such options can be very helpful.

Clonidine belongs to a class of meds known as alpha-agonists which also function as a hypotensive agent. The key use of this drug is to reduce spells of high blood pressure. As an extended application, clonidine is also used in the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity (ADHD) disorders. The drug is made in multiple formats, namely – normal release, sustained release or a controlled release. The controlled release variant is mostly prescribed for the management of restlessness or excessive levels of anxieties.

Those who have known allergies or hypersensitivity to clonidine may need to stay away from such hypotensive agents. Instead, you may choose to take a few naturally available alternatives to bring your pressure levels down. Some of the most popularly available alternatives include garlic, tomato, antioxidant-rich foods, potassium, dark chocolate, etc. In the sections below, you will get to know the benefits as well as therapeutic properties of these alternatives.

Garlic- This herb is widely regarded as a natural cure for many cardiac conditions. A chemical called allicin is abundantly present in this herb; it is allicin which offers a distinctive aroma to garlic. Studies indicate a strong association between intake of garlic and widening of blood vessels; such dilation ensures smoother flow of blood. It is needless to state – a smooth flow of blood directly has a direct impact on bringing down blood pressure level. Intake of garlic also inhibits the making of a hormone called angiotensin. This control helps to keep pressure levels under proper control. However, garlic may lose its therapeutic value when it is cooked (cooking makes allicin to get purged); hence, it is highly recommended to eat it raw or uncooked.

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Tomato- This is a commonly available fruit, known for the presence of an antioxidant called lycopene. Apart from antioxidants, tomato is also endowed with sizable amounts of beta carotene, vitamin (E variant), etc. The red-fruit is known to minimize the build-up of stress on the walls of your blood vessels; as a result, intake of tomato is widely linked to bring about a marked drop in blood pressure level. But, it is not safe to take processed tomato-based products – such a packed juices or pulp; this is because of the presence of excessive amounts of sodium in such processed foods.

Foods rich in antioxidants- Freely moving molecules are largely referred to as free radicals; these may pollute healthy cells and cause oxidative stresses inside such cells. Antioxidants are nature’s own way to handle these free molecules. A larger intake of fruits, fresh vegetables and a few supplements can help reduce oxidative stresses from building up. Once these stresses are decreased, you are very likely to witness a marked drop in your blood pressure level.

Intake of potassium- Potassium is often considered as a key nutrient for cardiac wellbeing and to keep blood pressure within limits. A key function of potassium is to ensure optimal discharge of urine. The connection here is – the larger the discharge of urine, the lesser is the amount of sodium present in the system. This is one of the reasons why foods and vegetables (rich in potassium) are prescribed over foods rich in salts such as sodium. Potassium can be found in larger levels in natural produce such as bananas, mango, watermelon, pears, papaya, raisin, etc. As part of a regulated dietary habit, you can consider limiting the intake of foods with excessive salt content; your kidneys will thank you for opting for such a diet.

Dark chocolate- A bar of bittersweet, black chocolate is known to have properties to lower the blood pressure level. Intake of dark chocolate is evidenced to bring down diastolic as well as systolic levels. These capabilities are largely attributed to cocoa; this plant food is known to have nitric acid in it. This acid is instrumental in dilating your arteries, to make way for better blood flow. However, exercise caution while taking bars of chocolate; excessive intake of chocolate may soon lead to obesity. Overweight or turning obese may carry distinctive risks of cardiac problems. Talk to a qualified dietitian to know how much of chocolate can one take. Based on studies done on this topic, it is highly recommended to take not more than 25-calories equivalent of chocolate within a 24-hour timeline.

Last but not least, changes in your lifestyle are needed to naturally bring down your blood pressure level. For example – you may consider walking for at least 15 minutes each day. Also, pay more attention to your weight and never let the weight index (such as BMI) cross its optimal level. In short, start moving around. Another advantage of moving out and staying under the sun is it can fetch you needful amounts of vitamins. It is equally important to avoid stressful people or conditions. You are advised to stay watchful of your breathing cycles and relax your mind. Also, moderate the amounts of alcohol you drink each day. Dietitians often talk about the benefits of drinking red wine; but, here again, moderation is the key. Never indulge in excessive drinking – either when you are alone or while you are with friends at a party.

In sum, clonidine is prescribed to reduce blood pressure levels. Those who are allergic to this drug may consider a few natural alternatives; such alternatives include intake of tomato and garlic to your daily diet, eating potassium-rich foods as well as opting to stay active. Leading a stress-free life, munching dark chocolate and ensuring your body has needful access to antioxidants are also equally effective alternatives. If you need more inputs on these natural alternatives to clonidine, consult with your treating doctor or with a dietitian.

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