Fasting will increase your blood pressure

Fasting can lower blood pressure

The German Hypertension League (DHL) points out that fasting under medical supervision can definitely have a positive effect on blood pressure. However, there are a few things to consider.

Spring cleaning for the body is booming. In a Forsa study, 55 percent of those surveyed thought fasting for health reasons makes sense, according to the Institute for Demoscopy Allensbach 11.5 million Germans have already fasted once. Many of them do without alcohol or sweets, others almost entirely without solid food. An American study comes to the conclusion that fasting has a positive effect on blood pressure values. The German Hypertension League advises those affected, however, to consult a doctor before starting the fast.

Study: Fasting normalizes blood pressure

In the study, scientists examined the effects of water fasting on the values ​​of hypertensive patients. 147 study participants with high blood pressure initially only consumed fruit and vegetables for two to three days of preparation, then only water and herbal teas for ten to eleven days under medical supervision.

This was followed by six to seven build-up days in which a low-fat and low-salt, vegan diet was introduced. The result: In 90 percent of the study participants, the blood pressure normalized at the end of the fasting program, it fell on average by 37/13 mmHg to values ​​below 140/90 mmHg.

"Fasting cures as a turning point, as a transition to a fundamental change in diet, can be useful in individual cases," says Professor Dr. Martin Hausberg, CEO of German Hypertension League. "That blood pressure values ​​will normalize completely as a result, however, should not be expected and depends on the degree of the high blood pressure disease," says Hausberg. Continuous dietary efforts are essential.

Experts: water fasting doesn't make sense

However, the high-pressure expert from the Karlsruhe Municipal Clinic advises against fasting in the sense of a zero diet, such as water fasting. "This leads to an unnecessary breakdown of protein and muscles," emphasizes Professor Hausberg. Therapeutic fasting can also be done with the so-called “juice fasting” according to Buchinger, which is based on fruit and vegetable juices. The juice days are followed by the establishment of a healthy mixed diet, which relies on a high proportion of fruit, vegetables and whole grain products.

"Hypertensive patients, but also people who feel healthy, should always discuss their fasting plans with their doctor," advises Professor Hausberg. "A check-up is enough for healthy people, people with illnesses should only fast under medical supervision." The fasting period should be limited to a maximum of three weeks, and healthy people should not fast longer than five to seven days without medical supervision.

Integrate a healthy lifestyle into everyday life

Exercise and relaxation units, which are an integral part of therapeutic fasting according to Buchinger, also contribute to the positive effects. These, too, should ideally be integrated into everyday life after the end of the fast.

"A balanced diet, exercise and a sensible balance of tension and relaxation - what patients implement by means of therapeutic fasting are the elements of the non-drug treatment of high blood pressure", summarizes Professor Hausberg. "Continuous dietary efforts and physical activity are decisive here."

Source: Press release of the German High Pressure League e. V. (DHL)