Beta blockers are a series of drugs that are generally used to treat blood pressure, though they do have other uses such as for glaucoma. Like many drugs, there are side effects, so some patients look for natural remedies as a substitute for beta blockers. If you have been prescribed beta blockers, talk to your doctor about natural remedies to see if they are a good fit for you.
Garlic has several properties to it that can help the heart. First, it has many sulfur-containing compounds. Sulfur has been proven to be low in people with high blood pressure, so an increase in sulfur may help. Garlic also helps thin the blood, which helps to prevent clots that can form in patients with cardiovascular diseases. It also lowers lipids, another benefit to help patients on beta blockers lower their chance of heart attack.
Saffron is one of the most expensive spices in the world, but thankfully a little goes a long way. The small threads of the Crocus sativus flower contain a chemical called crocetin which has been shown to have a positive effect on blood pressure. Cooking with saffron or making a tea out of it can both help, but the expense may make it prohibitive for many.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
The heart healthy benefits of omega-3 fatty acids have been touted for years. Taking a supplement such as fish oil has become quite popular. Flax seeds and their oil are also popular; both contain omega-3 fatty acids, which help reduce cholesterol. Reducing cholesterol, in turn, reduces blood pressure and risk of heart attack, which beta blockers are supposed to help as well. There may be some drug interactions though, so consult a doctor about other medications.
Valerian is used by many people to help them sleep because it helps to tame nerves and has a mild sedative effect. Both of these properties are what make valerian a good alternative to beta blockers. This is because a reduction in stress and nerves lowers blood pressure, which beta blockers do as well. The reduction in blood pressure helps reduce chance of stroke and heart attack.
Coenzyme Q10 is another popular herbal supplement that has properties that can help reduce blood pressure, much like beta blockers. Patients with hypertension can take the drug in pill form, helping to reduce blood pressure. It has also been used in patients with congestive heart failure, cardiomyopathy and recovering heart attack patients, making it an all-around heart healthy supplement.