The HeartMath Approach to Managing Hypertension: The Proven, Natural Way to Lower Your Blood Pressure


A Powerful, Drug-Free Approach to High Blood Pressure

High blood pressure is a national epidemic. It's a condition that affects one in four Americans, most of whom have no idea they are at higher risk for heart disease, stroke, and other life-threatening problems. Conventional treatments for hypertension involve drugs, and these can have considerable side effects and may not ultimately succeed in getting those numbers down. Fortunately, the Institute of HeartMath has researched ...

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A Powerful, Drug-Free Approach to High Blood Pressure

High blood pressure is a national epidemic. It's a condition that affects one in four Americans, most of whom have no idea they are at higher risk for heart disease, stroke, and other life-threatening problems. Conventional treatments for hypertension involve drugs, and these can have considerable side effects and may not ultimately succeed in getting those numbers down. Fortunately, the Institute of HeartMath has researched techniques for managing stress and hypertension for more than fifteen years. Now, at last, their highly effective strategies for regulating blood pressure safely and effectively are available to you.

Using a series of unique techniques like the Freeze-Frame ® and the Heart Lock-In ®, this book will help you literally regulate your blood pressure at the source-the heart level-and reduce the stress that causes high blood pressure. In as little as ninety days, you can 'reset' your baroreceptor systems and lower your blood pressure. The approach is drug-free, safe, effective, and clinically validated.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
This is a comprehensive overview of hypertension incorporates conventional medical wisdom as well up—to—date thinking regarding the important role of stress. Readers will find clear explanations of hypertension: its causes, deleterious effects on the body, and an explanation of the types of drugs used to treat it. But they will also learn about our growing understanding of the important contribution of stress hormones and will learn some simple techniques to engage their hearts and brains to restore inner equilibrium and calmness. This will be useful for anyone who wants to understand hypertension and the range of options available to address it.
—Kenneth M. Riff, MD, executive director of the Hawaii Heart Brain Center at North Hawaii Community Hospital

As this concise but meaty book emphasizes, hypertension is a major cause of death and disability. It is aptly called 'the silent killer' because patients may have no symptoms until it produces significant damage. Although there are numerous antihypertensive drugs, there is no algorithm that guarantees which will work best in any given patient and many have serious side effects. In contrast, the HeartMath® approach is completely safe and its efficacy has been demonstrated in years of cutting—edge research on heart rate variability feedback.
—Paul Rosch, MD, president of the American Institute of Stress

Connecting the mind, body, and emotions, Heartmath offers a quickly learned, scientifically validated approach to decreasing stress and impacting cardiac risk factors such as high blood pressure, diabetes, arrhythmia, and chest pain. Everyone needs to learn these techniques.
—Mimi Guarneri, MD, FACC, medical director of the Scripps Center for Integrative Medicine

The holistic approach to hypertension described in this book is user—friendly for patients of different ages. It addresses the essential bio—behavioral nature of the problem directly, with ideas to heal and balance body and mind.
—Timothy P. Culbert, MD, medical director, integrative medicine and cultural care, at Children's Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota

Wilson and Childre present an up—to—date, highly readable, and comprehensive approach to managing high blood pressure. Using a combination of evidence—based clinical recommendations (medications, exercise, and diet) together with scientifically validated HeartMath tools, the authors clearly and concisely explain the key role of the heart—brain connection ('heart intelligence') in the management of hypertension. If you have hypertension, this book is a must read. If your blood pressure is normal but your life is stressful (let's be honest—whose life is not?), I am convinced that combining HeartMath tools with a good diet and adequate exercise can help you achieve emotional balance and optimal health.
—Alan P. Feren, MD, president of Feren Healthcare Insights, LLC, and former chief medical officer of Sutter Health Partners

One third of Americans have high blood pressure. It is therefore likely that you or someone you love has this health problem (and may not even know it). Do you know how high blood pressure happens? Wilson and Childre teach us not only the causes of high blood pressure but how to take care of it, with reduced medication or no medication at all. All Americans should read this book.
—Lee Lipsenthal, MD, ABHM, heart disease researcher and president of the American Board of Holistic Medicine

The increasingly complex and ambiguous business world we now live in, and the speed at which this world can change, can result in maladaptive physiological responses in people. This often leads to a stress response mechanism which can result in sustained hypertension, which in its initial stages produces no symptoms. If sustained too long, it can result in profound and serious future health effects. Whilst medication, with all its potential side effects, has been the mainstay of treatmment for several years, HeartMath's research has been instrumental in demonstrating the role of certain emotional states in our stress response mechanisms. HeartMath® philosophy and tools have shown that by influencing these emotional states and their associated physiological mechanisms often responsible for hypertension, patients can take control and positively improve their physiology. This can result in preventing hypertension at an early stage, avoiding or delaying medication, or significantly reducing the quantity and dose of already prescribed antihypertensive medication.
—Tony Yardley—Jones, MD, Ph.D., specialist in occupational medicine at Chelsea & Westminster, London, UK, and director of occupational health at the Royal Berkshire Hospital, Reading, UK

Stress and its consequences remain major hurdles as people search for ways to improve quality of life and reduce susceptibility to illness. Wilson and Childre have put together a well—referenced, scientifically supported, novel approach to the management of one of our nation's biggest killers—hypertension. Knowing how vulnerable we are to developing high blood pressure is what makes the HeartMath approach so interesting and helpful. Having tools that can positively influence our responses to the stresses of daily life is critical in the battle against heart disease and stroke. Taking charge of our life stressors has great potential to decrease not only our blood pressure but reduce our susceptibility to other stress—related health problems. Enjoy the book and take the message 'to heart.'
—Kathy Berra, MSN, ANP, FAAN, past president of the American Association of Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation Cardiovascular Medicine and Coronary Interventions, Redwood City, CA

While there are hundreds of books on controlling high blood pressure, The HeartMath® Approach to Managing Hypertension clearly stands out as breakthrough work. Unlike any authors before them, Wilson and Childre have clearly recognized the role stress plays in elevating blood pressure and have developed scientifically—proven techniques for reducing stress and, thus, lowering blood pressure. This comprehensive book explains the causes of hypertension, the pros and cons of medications used to treat the condition, and looks at both conventional and alternative treatments. But most importantly, what you learn in The HeartMath® Approach to Managing Hypertension works! And that is a major step forward.
—Charles B. Inlander, president of People's Medical Society

This book not only discusses the link between stress and high blood pressure, but also serves as a great resource for how to break stress and its toxic effects in all people—not just those with hypertension. As the CEO of a large hospital, I am wholly supportive of the HeartMath® methodology to reduce stress in the workplace and in our daily lives. I have seen it work in my organization. The pace of our culture has increased dramatically over the past few decades, and if we do not take control of the issues that cause stress in our lives, we will not be able to perform the important services expected of us in the health care industry.
—Mary M. White, chief executive officer of the Swedish Medical Center, Denver, CO

This is a work that is informative and highly readable. It addresses a significant public health problem in a straightforward and practical way. You can feel the passion and caring put forth by these dedicated professionals. I can highly recommend it to anyone in the health care field as well as individuals afflicted by this chronic illness.
—Nick Hilger, senior vice president of strategic development for United Healthcare

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781572244719
  • Publisher: New Harbinger Publications
  • Publication date: 1/28/2007
  • Series: Unassigned Series
  • Edition description: 1ST
  • Pages: 152
  • Product dimensions: 6.48 (w) x 7.58 (h) x 0.46 (d)

Meet the Author

Doc Childre is the founder and chairman of the scientific advisory board of the Institute of HeartMath, the chairman of HeartMath LLC, and the chairman and CEO of Quantum Intech. He is the author of seven books and a consultant to business leaders, scientists, educators, and the entertainment industry on Intui-Technology. His HeartMath System and proprietary heart rhythm technology for coherence building, called the Freeze-Framer, has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Harvard Business Review, Prevention, Psychology Today, Army Times, New York Newsday, Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle, San Jose Mercury News, NBC's Today Show, ABC's Good Morning America, ABC's World News Tonight, CNN Headline News,, as well as numerous other publications and television programs around the world. Doc is also the acclaimed composer of three albums, whose concept of designer music became internationally recognized through his first album, Heart Zones, which spent fifty consecutive weeks on Billboard Magazine's music chart.

Bruce C. Wilson, MD, is a cardiologist who gives lectures and teaches seminars on the HeartMath tools for stress reduction and better health. He helped develop the HeartMath Health Care Division.

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Table of Contents

Foreword     ix
Acknowledgments     xv
Introduction     1
Prevention and Control
The HeartMath Approach
What Is Blood Pressure?     11
Problems with Blood Pressure
Measuring Blood Pressure
A Closed System
Causes of High Blood Pressure     17
Hypertension in African-Americans
Lack of Physical Activity
Excess Salt in the Diet
People at Increased Risk for Development of Hypertension
Secondary Hypertension
The Kidneys
The Adrenal Glands
Other Problems
Dangers of High Blood Pressure: Why Should You Treat It?     31
The Heart
The Brain
Kidney Disease
Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD)
The Eyes
Drug Treatment of Hypertension     41
Angiotensin Converting Enzyme Inhibitors and Angiotensin Receptor Blockers
Calcium Channel Blockers
Other Types of Drugs Used to Treat Hypertension
An Important Comment on Drugs
Lifestyle Changes That Help Lower Blood Pressure     53
Stress and Hypertension     61
Our View of Stress
The Human Stress Response
A Slower Set of Changes-The Hormonal System
The World in the Twenty-first Century
When the Stress Button Gets Stuck
Resetting Your Thermostat     75
Stories of Resetting Pressure Levels
When Stress Becomes an Addiction
The Power to Change
The Big Connection     81
TheHeartMath Story, as Told by Founder Doc Childre
Understanding the Power of the Heart
A New Research Tool-HRV
The Three Levels of the Human Brain
The Heart-Brain Connection
The HeartMath Tools     93
How Controlling HRV Can Reverse Stress
First Things First-Recognizing That Your Stress Button Has Been Pushed
Neutral-The Most Basic Tool
Quick Coherence
Rewriting Your Patterns     107
Writing New Patterns
Heart Lock-In
HeartMath Studies     117
Early Results
Correlating Mood and Blood Pressure
Beyond the Corporate World
HeartMath in Health Care
HRV Feedback Tools
Creative Stress
The End Is Just the Beginning     131
Classes of Drugs Used to Treat Hypertension     135
Learn More About HeartMath     141
References     147
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