Blood Pressure and Hypertension
With all the stress around us, it is of no wonder that adults become at risk to a lot of chronic diseases which can later on lead to death and debilitation. One of these diseases is hypertension. Hypertension is a medical condition wherein pressure inside the blood vessels is elevated. This can further lead to damage of the internal organs such as heart failure, kidney failure, stroke, heart attack or aneurysms. Hypertension can also increase a person's risk for dementia later in life.
The normal blood pressure level is 120/80mm Hg. The number 120 refers to the systolic pressure, or the highest pressure inside the arteries, while the number 80 refers to the diastolic pressure, the lowest pressure in the arteries. A blood pressure of between 120/80 to 139/89 is termed as pre-hypertension. Pre-hypertension is not hypertension per se but carries an increased risk for hypertension. A blood pressure of above 140/90 mm Hg is considered as hypertension.
Hypertension may either be primary or secondary in cause. Primary hypertension is commonly known as essential hypertension and denotes hypertension with no known cause. Majority of hypertension cases belong to this one. Secondary hypertension, on the other hand, is due to a number of causes such as kidney problems, steroid use, and other medical problems. There are risk factors for hypertension though, which includes a family history of hypertension, excess weight, diabetes, a sedentary lifestyle, a diet high in salt, nutritional deficiency, stress, endocrine problems, kidney diseases and smoking.
Signs and symptoms of hypertension include dizziness, chest pains, vision problems, difficulty of breathing, nausea and blood in the urine. Once a person experiences these symptoms, he or she should have themselves checked by the doctor. Repeated measurements of blood pressure on all limbs and in different positions are usually made before making a diagnosis of hypertension.
Now that you already know that hypertension is dangerous, what can you do about this? Actually there are natural ways of dealing with hypertension before resorting to more expensive and invasive ways.
Eat the right foods
Instead of eating cakes and ice cream, how about eating a piece of low-fat and low sugar yogurt? According to some studies, people lowered their risk of developing high blood pressure when fed with yogurt twice a week for over 14 years.
Do some weight-lifting
Physical activity can lower your risk of acquiring high blood pressure later in life. Weight lifting is said to lower systolic blood pressure by 5 points and diastolic blood pressure by 9 points. The effects were also said to last longer than cardio exercise. Weight lifting can also help lose weight
Drink red wine
Drinking a non-alcoholic type of red wine can lower blood pressure within one month, lowering systolic blood pressure by 5.8 points and diastolic blood pressure by 2.3 points. If you are not a fan of red wine, you can try consuming antioxidant rich foods and drinks.
Go for some sun.
Sunlight contains vitamin D which is a blood-pressure lowering vitamin. The results of one study says that exposure to sunlight for about 15 minutes for three times a week can lower blood pressure levels and maintain optimum functioning. This is because Vitamin D is a wonderful vitamin that can help relax your arteries and can improve its flexibility. Another study says that exposure to vitamin D can reduce your systolic and diastolic blood pressures by 4.6 points on the average.
Start having fun and be worry-free. Of course this is a hard thing to do but think about what it can do to your blood pressure. Being with friends and family can lower blood pressure levels while loneliness can increase your systolic BP by 3 points each year.
For more tips on how to be disease-free most of the time, feel free to browse other articles on this site.