How To Lower Resting Heart Rate

June 4, 2023

Heart rate refers to the number of beats an individual's heart undergoes per minute. This rate can change depending on an individual's emotions, physical activity level, and environment. The resting heart rate is the baseline for an individual's heart when they are not actively doing anything. The normal resting heart rate range is anywhere from sixty to one hundred beats per minute. A high resting heart rate can indicate an issue somewhere else in the body.

A severely high resting heart rate will require treatment. Some patients need heart medication, such as antiarrhythmic drugs for tachycardia, for their heart issues. Blood thinner treatment may be helpful too. Heart surgery may be needed in some instances. Thankfully, there are also lifestyle remedies, such as a weight loss regimen, for lowering a high resting heart rate. A heart-healthy diet and exercise for the heart may also help. Learn about the best ways for individuals to lower their resting heart rate now.

Exercise Regularly

One of the most common and effective ways for individuals to lower their resting heart rate is to exercise regularly. When an individual's resting heart rate is high, it means that their heart is pumping harder than necessary. It is out of shape, which means that it is not functioning as well as it should. A sedentary lifestyle causes an individual's heart to be less efficient. Thus, it cannot pump blood to the rest of their body as easily. Exercising regularly also helps reduce the risk of health complications like diabetes and blood pressure.

Individuals should do vigorous cardiovascular exercises for at least seventy-five minutes a week or do a moderate workout for at least 150 minutes per week. That means doing approximately a half-hour of moderate exercise five times per week or fifteen minutes of heavy cardiovascular exercise five times each week. Individuals who exercise more will see more dramatic improvements in their resting heart rate. Exercise increases the strength of an individual's heart, and since their heart is getting stronger, it can pump blood more efficiently through their body.

Get Sufficient Sleep

Getting sufficient sleep is another vital component of individuals lowering their resting heart rate. A lack of sleep can have severe repercussions on an individual's cardiovascular system. Experts recommend getting between seven and nine hours of sleep per night. Patients with certain medical conditions may need even more sleep than that. However, individuals are likely to need less sleep as they get older. If an individual often stays up too late, they may rack up a sleep debt that will impact every area of their life. When individuals get enough sleep, their blood pressure and heart rate both lower during the night.

Studies also show that sleep-deprived individuals do not have normal fluctuations in their heart rate. Instead, their heart rate remains elevated no matter whether they are resting or working. In addition, insufficient sleep can increase an individual's C-reactive protein levels. This protein is associated with inflammation, and it often points to a higher risk of cardiovascular disease. Another cardiovascular risk is insulin resistance, which a lack of sleep can cause. This may cause cardiovascular damage and type 2 diabetes.

Reduce Stress

An individual should take their resting heart rate when they are at rest, which is typically after they wake up. However, if they are dealing with a significant amount of stress and anxiety, it can have an ongoing effect on their heart rate. It can even be one that they see before their day has fully begun. Therefore, individuals should reduce the stress in their life however they can. For example, if individuals feel that they have too much to do and do not have enough hours in a day, they can investigate whether or not they can delegate tasks. It may also help to ask for an extension at work or school where possible.

If managing the household is hard, individuals may want to try setting more realistic expectations for their chores. Of course, individuals should make sure that they are making time for their hobbies and passions, as these are natural stress relievers. Many individuals also benefit from adding fifteen to thirty minutes of yoga or meditation to their daily routine. A mindfulness meditation before work can help an individual get in touch with their body, relieve stress, and prepare to face the day ahead.

Drink Less Caffeine

Caffeine is a stimulant, which means that it affects heart rate. Unfortunately, drinking a significant amount of caffeine impacts an individual's resting heart rate, even if they measure it shortly after they wake up in the morning. Cutting back on caffeine can be helpful for an individual's sleep quality as well, which also affects their heart rate. The effects of caffeine on an individual's heart health will vary from person to person. They also depend on how much caffeine an individual consumes, how many times per day they consume it, and how much they weigh. Some individuals, for instance, are simply more sensitive to caffeine than others.

If an individual cannot cut caffeine out of their diet entirely, they should make sure to limit their consumption of it in the afternoons and evenings. Though caffeine begins working quickly, it can take hours to exit an individual's system. As a result, individuals may feel tired, but the caffeine may also keep them from falling asleep when they go to bed. Limiting caffeine intake after 2 PM is a good method of sleep hygiene.

Maintain A Healthy Weight

Maintaining a healthy weight is another crucial method for individuals to lower their resting heart rate. The heavier they are, the more power is needed to circulate their blood. In other words, the individual's heart has to work harder to pump blood through their veins. This is particularly the case for individuals who do not have a significant amount of muscle. Of course, it is vital to note that extreme weight loss can have ill effects on the heart. However, the good news is that individuals do not necessarily need to lose a high amount of weight. They can instead focus on building enough muscle to support the weight of their body.

This ties back into how regular exercise is an essential factor for heart health and lowering an individual's resting heart rate. The more individuals exercise, the stronger their heart and body will be. Healthy weight loss can also reduce an individual's resting heart rate. However, it is best if individuals follow a plan set by their doctor. This includes consuming a healthy and balanced diet based on their recommendation.

MORE FROM HealthPrep