By Janet L. Hall, Naturopathy, CKP, CBT
Are you one of the many individuals who went in to see your doctor and were told you had high blood pressure? Were you given a medication for it? You might want to consider the information below on the many side effects and look at a more natural means of lowering blood pressure. It can actually be very simple!
Look at what is prescribed and the side effects for the Most Common Blood Pressure Medications:
In terms of dollar sales, Angiotensin II receptor blocker valsartan (Diovan) is number one, followed by the beta blocker Metoprolol, the combination of valsartan and HCTZ, olmesartan (Benicar), and olmesartan and HCTZ (Benicar HCT).
In terms of prescriptions written: ACE inhibitor lisinopril (Prinivil, Zestril) is top, followed by amlodipine besylate (Norvasc), a calcium channel blocker, and hydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ).
Common side effects:
- Cough & respiratory issues
- Constipation or diarrhea
- Dizziness or lightheadedness
- Erection problems
- Feeling nervous
- Feeling tired, weak, drowsy, fatigue or a lack of energy
- Nausea or vomiting
Types of Blood Pressure Medications & Side Effects
Vasodilators: (ex: Minoxidil) heart palpitations, swelling around eyes, aches and joint pain
Central agonists: (ex: clonidine, catapres) dry mouth, sleepiness, headaches, nightmares, depression
Methyldopa: dizziness, drowsiness, weakness, dry mouth
Alpha blockers: dizziness, fainting, increased heart rate, headache, nausea, weakness
Calcium channel blockers: swelling, heartburn, flushing, dizziness
Angiotensin II receptor blockers: hyperkalemia, fatigue, gastrointestinal issues, diarrhea, respiratory infections
ACE inhibitors – respiratory cough, headache, reduced kidney function
Beta Blockers: fainting, shortness of breath, chest pain (must wean off or at risk for heart attack)
Diuretics: (ex: hydrochlorothiazide, spironolactone) gout and dehydration, blood sugar changes, hypokalemia
One client had a constant cough from her med so severe it kept her from sleeping. Urgent care prescribed yet another medication for the cough. We changed her pressure with a few essential oils that cost pennies with no side effects!