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Lifters with High Blood Pressure/Hypertension?


Let me start by saying I'm not sure if this is in the right section, if it isnt please, move it.

So I'm 20 years old and have hyper tension. I seem to have inherited it from my parents. I consistently seem to read around 160/90, and thats with BP meds. I just went to the doctor today and he slightly upped my dose of lisinopril from 5 to 10mg and even told me to stop lifting for now until we got this under control. So I was wondering if anyone on here had it and if you found anything that helped lower the number? I recently tried to go full force and lower it but I havent seen much difference yet. I am switching to a paleo style diet, started taking more fish oil and drinking green tea instead of coffee. I figured if I can't lift I'll do some real low intensity cardio instead. Basically just walk.

So any tips or advice on how you or I should deal with this in a more natural way?

Diet Help for Critical Hypertension
Diet Help for Critical Hypertension

I have been trying to go low sodium but I think I need to log it. In general I try to avoid salt when I can but with eating egg whites, Milk, etc I feel it adds up fast but I dont eat fast food, soda (not even diet, I recently quit artificial sweetners) and no coffee.

Thanks for the advice though. I'm gonna start logging my sodium and food more closely. I also do have some bf to lose so Im gonna lose that. Might be a little hard until I get back to lifting weights but until then I'll do what I can.


You are young to have such a problem but then again blood pressure can be inherited. If I were you I'd try doing cardio 3-4 days per week. Cardio has a tendency to lower blood pressure in those people who have such a problem. I didn't see anything about your weight. If you are overweight, even if it's muscle, losing weight will help lower your blood pressure.

And as has already been advised lower your salt intake. Salt will absolutely drive up your blood pressure. Also eat less red meat and try a diet higher in fruits and vegetables. You might google "The Dash Diet" to get more information on this. Beware however it is a lifestyle change, but we both know that your health is worth it.

Best Of Luck,



i would continue taking the medicine...reduce sodium intake to moderate levels and eat more potassium containing foods...

keep exercising...


I have high BP too. I'm older but all the same stuff applies. Reduce the salt and booze too if you drink a lot. I've found high intensity cardio - sprints/hit type workouts, etc have some impact as does lower bodyweight. For me at least. But at the end of the day meds are needed to keep it under control. You're not alone and it sucks but there are worse things to have like diabetes. BTW - I kept doing heavy squats/DLs/ max bench etc. long before I went on meds. NOT telling you to ignore Dr. advice just to consider finding a Dr. that will work with you and what you want out of life. You'll likely be managing this condition for a long time so it's important to have a Dr. that understands you. Find one close to your age, that you like/trust, so you can work together for years to come. Good luck.


Stimulants might make things worse?


Sorry to bump this thread, but my pressure was abnormally high for someone my age, my dentist took it. I'm going to the cardiologist check this out, kind of freaking out.


As a medical student I feel as though I can help here.

MODOK touched on the most important lifestyle adaptions, namely salt restriction and weight loss, and I can't emphasize these enough, there have been NUMEROUS studies which show that sodium reduction (preferably <1500 mg/day but this is difficult) leads to a reduction in blood pressure and surely even more that link weight loss to reduced blood pressure. What is your height, weight, BF % currently?

I also want to say that a blood pressure of 160/90 is an important health concern and as I'm sure you know, puts you at an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. As well long term, uncontrolled hypertension can lead to physical changes to your heart (ie. certain chambers of your heart will hypertrophy, much like your muscles hypertrophy when exposed to an increased load, but this hypertrophy is pathological and can lead to changes which make it difficult for your heart to properly fill).

The last thing you want is to become a walking pharmacy at age 20, on numerous medications to keep your blood pressure down, as with more medications comes more side effects, so I urge you to keep reducing your blood pressure as the main goal of your training. You should not stop lifting, instead maybe start all your workouts with a half hour of steady state cardio, and build this up as you become more fit.

I wish you all the best and don't hesitate to PM me any questions you may have.


Is there actually a problem?

High BP can be an indicator of other issues... but do you have any other issues?


@ kaisermetal and partymonster975:

MODOK and ZEB are right on. That said, you should really take any advice with a grain of salt. Hypertension is a very complicated disorder.

Sodium sensitivity is a very poorly understood condition. There seem to be some genetic components, this explains why 10-20% of the population responds to lowering sodium intake below 1500mg/d. Anyone else is better off balancing the sodium-potassium ratio (keeping intake around 2000-2500mg), losing bodyfat, and improving lifestyle factors.

There is a great part in the new Meadows article about lowering BP, right under the pop-tart pic:



As I write this I'm wearing a 24 hour blood pressure meter, and I'm getting worried here. I've had little to no stress all day, yet my pressure is way high. The record so far is 200/110 while having a calm conversation with a client. I have yet to register systolic below 150.

I started reading about diet in relation to hypertension, as even before I speak to the doc, it seems clear there is a problem here. A lot of articles mention a reduction in saturated fats. I do wonder however if this applies to me, because my blood work is excellent. I have a total cholesterol of 4.0 mmol/L, and LDL is 2.7. I barely have triglycerides at all. Could there still be some other reason to cut back on the whole milk and eggs?

I also ask myself if this is the end of training for bigger 1RMs, which is what I really love to do. I could try to up my cardio from two sessions a week to three, but I'm not really in that bad a shape. My resting heart rate is down in forties. This really sucks. Any input would be much appreciated.


Most certainly, I have what you'd call high BP when I use stimulants (which is more than I should), but my BP rides 130/60 normally, which is fine.

Most stimulants have vaso-constrictive properties.


200/110 is stupid high, if you're hitting that in the middle of the day for no reason it's probably time to talk to your doc about meds, some shit you just can't fix with diet.


I'd love to hear more about this, because from what I can tell blood pressure is one of those symptoms that gets confused for a disease. High BP can indicate all kinds of bad things, but is not in itself a serious problem. Other than potential hypertrophy in the heart as you mentioned, what about high BP is problematic in itself (you have high BP and that's it: it's not "pointing" to some other more serious condition).


I suspect you're right. The whole thing is really weird though. Most people with high BP also have some blood values out of the normal ranges. I had a whole battery of tests taken about a month ago, and everything is great, except for a marginally elevated ASAT.


Weird. Had a cup of green tea. Ten minutes later my diastolic pressure fell to 64. Systolic is still a much too high 157.