High blood pressure can be controlled through a number of ways. Other than taking medications prescribed by a heart specialist, the consumption of cholesterol-lowering foods and exercising regularly help keep the levels of LDL (low-density lipoprotein) or bad cholesterol in check, thus preventing the blood pressure from increasing and going off the charts.

It’s a fact that the consumption of fiber- and antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables as well fish loaded with healthy fatty acids can keep high blood pressure at bay. Engaging in cardiovascular exercises like walking, swimming, bicycling or playing badminton 20 to 60 minutes a day, at least 5 times a week can also help you maintain an ideal blood pressure. But did you know that helping others is also an effective as well as a rewarding way to keep your blood pressure within normal levels?

This is observation was reveled when researchers at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh did an experiment way back in 2006, spanning 4 years. The said experiment involved 1,164 participants, all of which are adults 51 to 90 years of age.

When the experiment began, all participating adults had normal blood pressure. Later on in 2010, the researchers found out that participants who devoted as many as 200 hours a year to volunteer works had 40% less likelihood of suffering from high blood pressure compared to those who didn’t engage in volunteer works at all. What’s even more surprising is the kind of volunteer work conducted didn’t seem to matter at all. What mattered is the 200 hours a year spent on volunteering.

One possible reason behind this surprising outcome is lending a helping hand can be a very rewarding experience. Needless to say, something that makes a person happy can have a favorable impact on the health. On the other hand, it’s not unlikely for somebody who refrains from engaging in activities that help foster human relationships to suffer from illnesses that involve spiritual, mental and emotional aspects. Ultimately, these illnesses can have a measurable impact on the health.

Available volunteer works that may help you maintain normal blood pressure come aplenty. They range anywhere from feeding the homeless to participating in an athletic meet for a cause. You even don’t need to be a part of an organization just to do volunteer works as you may also take certain steps that allow you to serve the community and its residents on your own. Some good examples include teaching a child to read or offering to drive an elderly who wants to do some grocery shopping.

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