Health Advice



Are you sitting on your blood pressure problems?

By Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D. on

Antoninus, a teenage Roman emperor from 218 to 222, invented the whoopee cushion to tease his dinner guests. The modern version of the flatulent pillow appeared in the 1930s -- and millions have been sold to folks wanting to make guests pop out of their seats.

Breaking up sit-down sessions is a great idea -- but the benefits are no joke. At the top of that list is the power of UP to bring blood pressure DOWN.

If you don't get a good dose of physical activity most days, chances are you're dealing with high blood pressure. That's because sitting or reclining for many hours a day stifles your metabolism. That, in turn, lowers levels of certain metabolites, whose job is to dilate blood vessels in response to activity. Those lower levels cause blood vessels to constrict, making your pressure rise.

Luckily, even brief bouts of activity throughout the day can improve blood pressure. One study found that when people with diabetes interrupted sitting with 30 minutes of light-intensity walking or with three minutes of simple resistance exercises every half hour, blood pressure went down by 14 to 16 mmHg (systolic) and 8 to 10 mmHg (diastolic). That'll change your future!

Bonus: Using a high-resistance inspiratory muscle strength training (IMST) device for five minutes daily for six weeks strengthens breathing muscles, stimulates production of blood-vessels-relaxing nitric acid and can drop your systolic number by around 9 mmHg, while it improves the ability for arteries to expand upon stimulation by 45%. Ask your doctor if the device is right for you.



Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of "The Dr. Oz Show," and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Wellness Officer and Chair of Wellness Institute at Cleveland Clinic. To live your healthiest, tune into "The Dr. Oz Show" or visit

(c)2021 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D.

Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.

(c) 2021 Michael Roizen, M.D. and Mehmet Oz, M.D. Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.



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