8 Ways to Lower Your Blood Pressure Quickly

There are ways to lower your blood pressure instantly, but you shouldn't rely on them to manage hypertension.
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If doctor's appointments or health screenings make you nervous, you may be looking for ways to quickly lower your blood pressure before tests.


While there are tricks to lower blood pressure quickly, keep in mind that you should never try to cheat a blood pressure test, or hide hypertension from your doctor, as it may prevent you from getting the treatment you need and contribute to more serious health problems.

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With that said, you might try these tips to lower your blood pressure before a doctor's appointment as a short-term way to deal with anxiety over a health screening.

Just make sure you're also making the necessary changes to your diet and lifestyle to bring your BP into a healthy range for the long run.


Hiding high blood pressure or avoiding treatment can pose a serious health risk. Work with your doctor to use long-term strategies rather than quick fixes for high blood pressure.

How to Quickly Lower Your Blood Pressure

1. Take a Few Deep Breaths

Breathe deeply for 15 minutes before testing. Shallow breathing increases blood pressure, so you'll want to do the opposite, per Harvard Health Publishing.


How to do deep breathing: Inhale through your nose while counting slowly to five, letting your abdomen expand rather than your chest. Then exhale through your mouth, counting slowly to six.

2. Drink Some Beet Juice

Drink 20 oz. of beet juice. Beet juice has nitrate, a component that dilates blood vessels and increases blood flow. While not a long-term treatment, a small February 2015 randomized controlled trial in ‌Hypertension‌ found that daily supplementation of dietary nitrate (250 milliliters beetroot juice) was associated with a reduction in blood pressure in study participants.


3. Take a Walk

Take a brisk walk for at least 15 to 20 minutes. While at least 30 minutes of physical activity five days a week can reduce blood pressure overall and is effective for managing hypertension, per the Mayo Clinic. Even a short walk can lower blood pressure instantly because it produces rhythmic breathing, which calms the body's stress response, per Harvard Health Publishing.


Moreover, the extra oxygen helps the heart use oxygen more efficiently, thereby decreasing the stress or pressure on the heart. Just be careful your blood pressure isn't too low after exercise, as that can be a sign of another underlying condition.


4. Try Water

Drink a glass of water. Staying hydrated can help keep your blood pressure from plummeting and then spiking, which can be dangerous, per the Cleveland Clinic.


Make sure you're getting anywhere between 11.5 and 15.5 cups of water per day, through drinking or water-rich foods, per the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine.

5. Eat a Banana

Eat a banana or other potassium-rich food. Potassium is an electrolyte, and it plays a significant role in some of the mechanisms that control blood flow and heartbeat, per the American Heart Association (AHA).


Beyond food, if your doctor prescribes them, potassium supplements can also help to lower blood pressure. Depending on how fast your body metabolizes the foods rich in potassium, your blood pressure could drop during and after eating these foods.

6. Avoid Unhealthy Foods and Habits

Refrain from smoking at least one hour before your appointment, as smoking can cause a spike in blood pressure and decrease oxygen intake, per the AHA.


Avoid fatty meals and foods with a lot of salt, too: both often have lots of sodium and can increase blood pressure — at least two days before the physical, per the National Library of Medicine.

7. Take a Catnap

Turns out, taking midday naps may actually lower your blood pressure and slow down your heart rate, which can be especially helpful prior to getting a blood pressure reading at the doctor, per the American College of Cardiology.

8. Avoid Morning Appointments

If you have anxiety about taking blood pressure tests, avoid making morning appointments and tell the nurses and doctors about your anxiety. Additionally, morning hypertension is common, as blood pressure is naturally higher in the morning.


Some of these tricks for lowering blood pressure quickly may help bring down your numbers in the long run if you use them regularly. For example, practice deep breathing once a day, stay well hydrated, avoid unhealthy habits like smoking and go for a walk several times a week.



references & resources

Is this an emergency? If you are experiencing serious medical symptoms, please see the National Library of Medicine’s list of signs you need emergency medical attention or call 911.