Taki MaiTaki Mai

By Zane Yoshida

How to Lower Blood Pressure the Natural Way

High blood pressure (hypertension) is a major health problem in most developed countries, and also in urban populations of many developing countries.

It can lead to heart problems such as stroke and disease, as well as to kidney disease: all leading causes of death in western populations. In the U.S. alone, around 75 million adults have the condition.

This is especially dangerous when coupled with rising rates of obesity, diabetes, as well as poorer diets, and lack of exercise.

With many people over-medicated, the search for natural ways to counter hypertension in place of prescription drugs is becoming more common. Though you should always check with your doctor or other health professional first, here are a few ideas for lowering blood pressure the natural way.

Exercise

No surprise here; regular exercise has a positive effect on many health problems, especially if you are overweight to begin with. A regular exercise program that includes initially light activities like walking should help you lose weight and get in shape, in the process helping to control blood pressure. As your body gets more accustomed to exercise, try stepping it up and getting a stronger cardio workout.

Chiropractic care

Did you think chiropractic care was just for spinal problems? In fact, it has been associated with improvements in a range of health conditions that surprise many people. If you’re looking for an alternative to ‘conventional’ medicine, try a natural approach that has been proven over many years.

Improve diet

No surprises here that diet is mentioned, but I’m not going to include the standard low-calorie, low fat foods. If you’re active enough, you will burn calories, but try to avoid too much processed food and especially highly refined sugar. Eat a balanced diet with more fresh fruit and vegetables and natural, whole foods, as this will help to boost metabolism.

Detox

Detoxing your body can be a great starting point for getting healthier and lowering blood pressure; it makes sense to flush out the toxins that have accumulated before you start to change diet and take up exercise. Find a plan that is focused on long-term health rather than merely short-term weight loss.

Drink more water and freshly-squeezed vegetable juice

If you can get your hands on organic vegetables and a juicer or blender, you have the keys to making delicious and healthy liquid foods. Whether it’s a carrot juice or a concoction of green vegetables you prefer, it can be a great way to supplement meals.  Additionally, drink plenty of water.

Take kava

You knew this one was coming, didn’t you? Kava has been shown in clinical tests to be effective in treating mild anxiety; stress can raise your blood pressure, so a little extra relaxation with some calming kava should have the opposite effect.

As well as kava, you might like to try valerian root; but here on Taki Mai we feel that we probably don’t need it

By Zane Yoshida

Kava – The Nutraceutical

Kava has been called many things in its time. But the latest term, nutraceutical, can be a little confusing. So it’s time to clear up what that means.

Herb? Drug? Medicine? Natural Remedy?

What is kava?

Well, on the Web you’ll see it referred to as a herb, a drug (often mentioned in the same breath as kratom), a medicine, a drink, a supplement… so many different terms to describe the dried root that we know as kava.

The piper methysticum plant, from which kava is produced, is part of the pepper family (it literally means ‘intoxicating pepper’). It has been used for many centuries down through the ages across the Pacific islands, for recreational, ceremonial, and medicinal purposes.

But it has always been something of a challenge to describe exactly why its use is so widespread around the islands, its precise effects on users, and what category of products the root belongs to.

Kava as a nutraceutical

One of the latest tags to be tied to kava is ‘nutraceutical’.

The concept of a nutraceutical has existed since 1989, when the word ‘pharmaceutical’ was combined with ‘nutrition’ by the Foundation of Innovation Medicine.

It is essentially a pharmaceutical-grade and standardized nutrient or, in other words, a substance derived from a food source that is said to provide extra nutritional and health value. These substances are often associated with health benefits, such as helping with chronic diseases, slowing the ageing process, or increasing life expectancy.

Around the world, neutraceuticals are regulated in various ways by the Food and Drug administrators. Examples of nutraceuticals apart from kava, include chia seeds, turmeric, ginseng, garlic, and various vitamins and minerals.

The reason why kava is increasingly being considered a nutraceutical is because of its proven anxiety and stress-relieving properties. This is reflected in a recent article in the Fiji Times about the kava industry, which said this about kava’s growing reputation:

“There has been great interest in kava as a “nutraceutical”, a herbal alternative to pharmaceutical sleeping and anti-anxiety pills because of kava’s soporific and calming qualities.”

Nutraceuticals may be found in their raw, natural form or as tablets, capsules, gels, liquids, or powders.  As you may know, Taki Mai kava is now available as a shot, in powder (instant) form, or as capsules.

Enjoy your next shot of kava…whatever it’s called!

By Zane Yoshida

Even Thought Leaders Take Kava Supplements

We were honoured and humbled to receive a mention recently from a thought leader in healthcare in the U.S. It’s great to read about all the people enjoying our kava supplements across the world!

Tieraona Low Dog, MD has been studying natural medicine for 35 years and served as President of the American Herbalist Guild, before receiving her Doctor of Medicine degree from the University of New Mexico School of Medicine.

Specialising in integrative medicine, dietary supplements, herbal medicine, women’s health and natural medicine, she has regularly worked on national health policy:

  • Appointed by President Bill Clinton to serve on the White House Commission of Complementary and Alternative Medicine
  • Member of the Advisory Council for the National Institutes of Health National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM).

Earlier this year she received the “Herbal Insight Award” from the American Herbal Products Association and is a published National Geographic author, regular public speaker, and a frequent guest on the Dr. Oz show and NPR’s The People’s Pharmacy.

You can find out more about Tieraona Low Dog, MD here.

So what about the kava supplements?

Kava clearly plays an important part in Dr. Low Dog’s life and it was really inspiring to know that it is Fijian kava in particular that holds a special place in her heart.

This was here recent Facebook post:

“I recently finished reading a book on kava by a colleague Chris Killham, a plant I have loved ever since the first time I drank it in 1998 in Fiji. Though Chris wrote about his experience in Vanuatu, kava has played an important role in the lives of many Pacific Island communities socially, religiously, and medicinally. I find it fascinating how kava is so deeply interwoven into the very fabric of their culture. Communities enjoyed it daily (and still do) to bring about an overall sense of happiness and relaxation. Eleven randomized controlled trials have shown it to be highly effective for treating anxiety. While safety concerns were raised around kava usage, it appears they were mostly due to improperly prepared products. I often travel with Yogi Kava Stress Relief teabags, delicious. And when I want a stronger effect, I enjoy Taki Mai guava flavored over ice….. I understand why many islanders are so happy! (Well that, and the beach…)

There you go – further proof of the effectiveness of kava supplements in combating anxiety, from someone very much in the know and at the top of her profession. Thank you Dr. Low Dog!

How to Lower Blood Pressure the Natural Way
Kava – The Nutraceutical
Even Thought Leaders Take Kava Supplements