When I first heard the explanation of how dehydration leads to high blood pressure, I (Tianya S. Clark, B.S., CNHP) remember thinking, “This sounds good, but as my professor used to say, “There is nothing like an ugly little fact to mess up a perfectly beautiful theory”. As if reading my mind, Dr. Anstett went on to explain to our class that Chinese medicine represents the heart as wood that is burning. If a wood fire is burning too high (the heart and blood vessels working too hard) what do you do to slow it down? You put water on the fire. In the same way, you would drink more water to slow the burning wood (hypertension). In other words, Chinese medicine’s official stand is drinking water eliminates the dehydration and, in turn, lowers high blood pressure.
Well, how does western medicine view it? When a person has high blood pressure, they are often given diuretics to make them urinate. Drinking more water will make you urinate. The person with high blood pressure may also be given blood thinners. Drinking more water will thin your blood. Finally, they are often given calcium channel blockers to prevent the heart from working so hard and the muscles from squeezing the blood vessels so hard. According to Chinese medicine, drinking the water to thin the blood will prevent the need for the heart and these muscle to squeeze so hard. Makes sense doesn’t it! Give it a try. Drink the proper amount of water to eliminate dehydration and see what happens.
“I feel wonderful. I can walk long distances again and my
blood pressure sits right at 121/80.”
Valerie G, Richmond, Virginia
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