Besides the obvious: skipped blood pressure meds, excess salt, caffeine, or other stimmulatns, what causes blood pressure to rise suddenly?
First, check your monitor. It is possible that the reading is an error. Retest your blood pressure again, just to make sure.
If you get excessively fluctuating blood pressure reading minute to minute, either you need to get a more reliable monitor, or read on causes of erratic blood pressure, cases where the numbers fluctuate by the minute.
Supplements can cause sudden rise in blood pressure
The second thing you need to do is to consider that some supplements may cause blood pressure to rise suddenly, especially when they are paired with incompatible medication. It does not matter that the herbal supplement is sold over the counter. Unexpected reactions happen and you may be the unlucky one.
Here is a list of more common herbs that can cause blood pressure to suddenly rise, even without an overdose.
- Bitter orange (Citrus aurantium)
- Ephedra (ma-huang)
- Ginseng (Panax quinquefolius and Panax ginseng)
- Guarana (Paullinia cupana)
- Licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra)
- St. John’s wort (Hypericum perforatum)
Not all sudden blood pressure spikes are bad
Third thing you need to do is to understand why blood pressure spikes suddenly and trace your trigger. Maybe that sudden rise is absolutely normal. Did you know that some spikes actually indicate robust health?
For example, some athletes can spike blood pressure suddenly from 200 to 400 mmHg systolic during their maximum exertion time. Such large blood pressure rise is possible in weight lifters during their lifts. These spikes have nothing to do with hypertension.
When blood pressure spikes are deadly
These spikes neither cause strokes, nor heart attacks because elastic arteries can withstand high pressure. Blood pressure spikes are only deadly with inelastic arteries.
When to worry about blood pressure spikes
How can you distinguish between a normal blood pressure spike and the one you should worry about? The rule for BP readings is rather simple: spikes during physical activity may be normal. Spikes when you are relaxed, never are.
Any time you sit in front of TV, read a book, or browse the computer, your BP numbers should reflect your non-excited state. If, at any time they go above 140/90 mmHg, they should make you think. 140/90 mmHg may be normal when you move the fridge from the first to the second floor, but not when you sit in a park and drink beer.
Blood pressure spikes need a trigger
If the readings are high without any physical exertion, then you need to look for a trigger. To discover what provokes it, will have to check your numbers at different times of the day. Your job is to find the pattern, establish the cause, and remove it. The cause may be as simple as stress from overwork, noodles your body has sensitivity to, or news on TV.
To help you find out what triggers you may have use the BP log download (red button). It will take you through most common triggers.
If it happens that stress is the culprit behind your high readings, instead of ignoring it and shrugging the shoulders, invest time in learning stress coping strategies. There are many useful gadgets that teach relaxation effortlessly. Among those are:
Other factors that cause blood pressure to rise suddenly
Coffee, salt, stimulants, incompatible herbs, stress, physical exertion aren’t the only causes. Here are a few you must also consider:
Nutritional insufficiencies are so common in North America that they have to be always considered, regardless of the diet.
You can either check your body’s nutrient levels or get a few supplements that cover deficiencies common in high blood pressure.
Cortisol insufficiency or excess;
Cortisol plays a huge role in cardiovascular health. Unfortunately it is not a test most doctors do. You can check whether cortisol production is an issue through this adrenal profile test.
Deconditioning is a fancy name for prolonged lack of physical activity that leads to diminished physical capacity. Excessively sedentary lifestyle is easy to check. All you need to do to see your activity level is to wear a fitbit or vivoactive for a couple of days.
Fluctuating blood pressure and blood pressure swings are very strongly linked to lack of exercise as well as overall muscle performance, which can be tested through grip strength. To test grip strength you need a dynamometer.
For other causes and natural solutions spikes and dips consult The Ultimate Guide to Low & Fluctuating Blood Pressure. It may be just the read you are looking for.
When I went to my Dr appt my blood pressure was 158/90 sitting and 187/99 standing. I went to her Bcause tightness in chest and shortness in breath that happened a couple days earlier after a hike on high incline. I believed it was a asthma attack but she disregarded it. Every time I go to the Dr my blood pressure is around 150/80 but I keep a close eye on it at home its never higher then 138/85. She wants me to take blood pressure meds I don’t want to. I researched garlic extract is good and potassium as well as fish oil which I’m taking now plus exercise more. My anxiety has been high lately which doessnt help but I feel is due to the blood pressure. Do you have any other natural supplement suggestions? Is it ok to take all these daily?
Thank u so much. When the cholesterol levels r very good y my blood pressure is high. pl.advise me. Thanks.
Tracy, there is a reason why your pressure goes up. Before you go into any supplements, take your time and see what may be happening in your life.Can it be stress? If yes, then how can you minimise it or cope with it better? Can it be high blood viscosity? Then look into foods that thin and thicken blood. Can it be lack of physical conditioning? If this is the case tabata training will do wonders. Focus on improving your health, not on increasing supplemental load.
Cholesterol and blood pressure don’t fluctuate day to day in the same direction.
However, if you occasionally have high cholesterol and high blood pressure you are in a ill-health zone. Before escalating into a permanent misalignment, cholesterol and blood pressure will be getting in and out of the healthy ranges for many years. If no lifestyle changes are made, both eventually end up high.
What is high blood viscosity .? My blood pressure has been very high for just over a week 170/100
I found out I have a kidney stone but was told that has nothing to do with my BP rise .primary car dr handed me a script for beta blocker which I was on 2 years ago it was horrible is there a better medication until I figure out what’s wrong with me. I also am on hypothyroid compounded meds which we upped about one month ago I don’t know if that could be it .also I have had very high cortisol but how do I get that down ugh frustrated
High blood viscosity means that blood has harder time to flow due to its thickness. Anyhow, if you are stressed and overweight, start here. Weight gain and stress are related to high blood viscosity, high blood pressure, hypothyroid, and high cortisol. Frustration only adds to your problems, so don`t go there. Make a recovery plan and stick to it.