So You Have High Blood Pressure What Else Could Be Wrong
If you have high blood pressure, get checked for diabetes and high cholesterol. Most people who have high blood pressure also have some of the other risks for heart disease and stroke, such as not getting enough physical activity, having unhealthy eating habits, smoking, being overweight or drinking too much alcohol. Ask your doctor to test your kidney function through a blood and urine test, and through the electrolytes in your blood kidney problems can cause high blood pressure.
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Second Misconception Is That High Blood Pressure Can’t Be Prevented
Perhaps you have other relatives with high blood pressure. Maybe you’re a member of a group of people who are at greater risk. For these or other reasons, you may be tempted to think that there’s nothing you can do about high blood pressure.
Here is some good news about high blood pressure: Even if you have many risk factors, there are steps you can take to prevent high blood pressure:
- Keep your weight at a healthy level. You can accomplish this by a combination of healthy eating and regular exercise.
- Eat a healthy diet. This includes eating only the amount of food your body needs and choosing foods high in nutrients and low in fat, sugar, and salt.
- Limit how much salt you eat. Most of the sodium you eat is in the form of salt. It may be salt that you add at the table or salt added to processed foods you consume.
- Limit how much alcohol you drink.
- Don’t smoke tobacco, and minimize your exposure to secondhand smoke.
- Get regular exercise. Try to get at least 30 minutes of activity each day, at least five days a week. Exercise relieves stress and helps you control your weight.
- Don’t let stress build up. The chemicals your body makes in response to stress make your heart beat harder and faster and your blood vessels tighten. All this makes blood pressure higher.
Ask your doctor for suggestions about high blood pressure and how to prevent it. Your doctor may refer you to other health care professionals who can help.
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Blood Pressure And Ageing
With advancing years, the arteries tend to become more rigid . This may change a persons blood pressure pattern, with a higher systolic pressure and a lower diastolic pressure. The higher systolic pressure is important because it can further accelerate the rigidity of the arteries. This state is referred to as isolated systolic hypertension. Although these changes are due to ageing, this is not a normal state and may need medication to control the systolic pressures.
What Is Normal Blood Pressure
A blood pressure reading is written like this: 120/80. It’s read as “120 over 80.” The top number is called the systolic, and bottom number is called the diastolic. The ranges are:
- Normal: Less than 120 over 80
- Elevated: 120-129/less than 80
- Stage 1 high blood pressure: 130-139/80-89
- Stage 2 high blood pressure: 140 and above/90 and above
- Hypertension crisis: higher than 180/higher than 120 — See a doctor right away
If your blood pressure is above the normal range, talk to your doctor about how to lower it.
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Lowering Systolic Blood Pressure More May Cut Health Risks
One major study found that lowering systolic blood pressure to well below the commonly recommended level also greatly lowered the number of cardiovascular events and deaths among people at least 50 years old with high blood pressure.
When study participants achieved a systolic blood pressure target of 120 mmHg compared to the higher target of 140 mmHg recommended for most people, and 150 for people over 60 issues such as heart attack, stroke and heart failure were reduced by almost one-third, and the risk of death by almost one-fourth.
“That’s important information, because more lives may be saved and more deaths may be prevented if we maintain lower blood pressure in certain patients,” says Lynne Braun, NP, PhD, a nurse practitioner at the Rush Heart Center for Women.
Braun cautions, however, that your personal blood pressure target depends on a variety of things, including your current blood pressure, lifestyle, risk factors, other medications you are taking and your age. “Every person has to be evaluated as an individual,” she says. “Realistically, we can’t get everybody down to 120, and trying to do so may create unintended problems.”
It can be dangerous, for instance, to keep an older person on medications that have unsafe side effects, such as diuretics , which can cause dehydration and dizziness in older adults.
And there can be other issues involved with taking multiple medications, such as cost and compliance.
Common Causes Of High Blood Pressure Spikes
Some people with high blood pressure will experience sharp rises in their blood pressure. These spikes, which typically last only a short period of time, are also known as sudden high blood pressure. These are some possible causes:
- Certain medications or combinations of medications
- Chronic kidney disease
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What Does It Mean If You Fall Into The New Guidelines
With these new guidelines, it is estimated that about 14 percent of people will now be classified as having hypertension many of those individuals may be younger. However, only a small percentage will require intervention by medication. Individuals who now fall into a hypertensive category will receive more aggressive prevention interventions, like lifestyle changes.
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Good Sleep Can Prevent And Manage High Blood Pressure
Most people experience a dip in blood pressure during the deepest stage of sleep , which is the body’s normal and healthy reaction to sleep. Not having that nighttime dip is a risk factor for heart disease and may increase daytime blood pressure.
Typically people spend 90 minutes to two hours in slow wave sleep per night. A recent study published in Hypertension found that men who got less slow wave sleep each night were a higher risk for hypertension than men who got more deep sleep.
While sleep disorders, like sleep apnea, and age can both affect the amount of deep sleep you get, there are steps you can take to ensure a good night’s sleep. Getting seven to eight hours of sleep a night, maintaining a consistent sleep schedule and being more active during the day can help improve the quality of your sleep.
Is Pork Harmful To People Who Have High Blood Pressure
Purdue University research suggests that lean, unprocessed pork can be used in a DASH diet.
This study demonstrates that lean, unprocessed red meats can be included in the DASH diet in proper serving sizes, said Wayne Campbell, a nutrition science professor.
This research only pertains to unprocessed lean pig cuts like tenderloin and fresh, uncured ham that has been stripped of visible fat. The serving size was three ounces per person.
To lower total and saturated fat, as well as sodium, the diet excludes red meat. The DASH diet, which emphasizes increased consumption of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy, nuts, poultry, and fish while lowering fats, red meats, including pork, and added sugars, is frequently recommended to lower blood pressure.
Many cuts of red meat, such as beef or pork tenderloin and fresh ham, are lean, meaning they have less than 10 grams of total fat and 4.5 grams of saturated fat per 100 grams. Extra lean is defined as having less than 5 grams of total fat and less than 2 grams of saturated fat per 100 grams of body weight.
Peoples diet choices can be limited if they can only eat fish and chicken, Drew Sayer, a doctoral student in nutrition science and a co-author on the study, said. Our findings support that lean pork may be a viable option for people who are consuming a DASH diet without compromising the diet plans effectiveness.
The studys 19 participants had high blood pressure and were on average 61 years old.
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What Does High Blood Pressure Mean
High blood pressure is a problem where the force on your artery walls is too high to be expected. If you have high blood pressure, then your heart has to work harder than it should. It can increase your risk of heart attack and stroke.
When you dont get enough potassium in your diet, this can lead to higher blood pressure levels. People who eat a lot of salt will often take in less potassium than they need, increasing their risk of high blood pressure.
Potassium can help reduce hypertension, but some medicines that lower blood pressure may also cause you to have low potassium levels. If you are on these types of medicine, your doctor will probably recommend taking a calcium supplement since calcium often helps balance the effects of these medications.
If you already have high blood pressure issues, you should talk to a health care professional before adding a potassium supplement to your diet.
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Have Your Blood Pressure Measured Regularly
Have your blood pressure measured regularly and know what your blood pressure is. Remember that both numbers are important. If either the systolic or diastolic number is high , then your doctor will need to further check your blood pressure. A blood pressure measurement of less than 120/80 mmHg is very good unless it causes dizziness.
How Can I Control My Blood Pressure
You can often lower your blood pressure by changing your day-to-day habits and by taking medication if needed. Treatment, especially if you have other medical conditions such as diabetes, requires ongoing evaluation and discussions with your doctor.
Lifestyle changes you can make to help prevent and lower high blood pressure:
In addition to recommending lifestyle changes, your doctor will likely prescribe medication to lower your blood pressure to a safe level. Isolated systolic hypertension, the most common form of high blood pressure in older adults, is treated in the same way as regular high blood pressure but may require more than one type of blood pressure medication. You may try several kinds or combinations of medications before finding a plan that works best for you. Medication can control your blood pressure, but it can’t cure it. If your doctor starts you on medication for high blood pressure, you may need to take it long-term.
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What Can I Do To Prevent Or Manage High Blood Pressure
Many people with high blood pressure can lower their blood pressure into a healthy range or keep their numbers in a healthy range by making lifestyle changes. Talk with your health care team about
- Getting at least 150 minutes of physical activity each week
- Not smoking
- Managing stress
In addition to making positive lifestyle changes, some people with high blood pressure need to take medicine to manage their blood pressure. Learn more about medicines for high blood pressure.
Talk with your health care team right away if you think you have high blood pressure or if youve been told you have high blood pressure but do not have it under control.
How Blood Pressure Changes
Your body controls the pressure in your arteries using a complex system of regulators including your heart, kidneys, enzymes, hormones, and nervous system.
Your blood pressure is always adjusting, based on your activity level, stress level, time of day, and even the position of your body. Lifestyle factors such as alcohol, caffeine, food, tobacco , and stress can all change your blood pressure.
There are several categories of high blood pressure:
- High blood pressure stage 1
- Hypertension stage 2
- Hypertensive crisis
If either of the numbers in your blood pressure measurement is higher than normal, you should work on reducing your blood pressure through lifestyle changes and should seek the care of a physician.
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Foods To Avoid If You Have High Blood Pressure
If you have hypertension, you already know how important it is to steer clear of foods that are harmful to your cardiovascular health. In the following article, we present 20 of the most illicit dishes for heart-conscious eaters.
Of course, this list is not exhaustive. If you have any questions about your diet or health, dont hesitate to speak to your doctor, pharmacist, or nutritionist.
Processed Foods With Trans Or Saturated Fat
Its best to limit saturated fats and avoid trans fats if you want to keep your heart healthy. This is particularly true for persons who suffer from high blood pressure.
Trans fats are synthetic fats that extend the shelf life and stability of packaged goods.
Eating them, on the other hand, elevates LDL cholesterol while lowering HDL cholesterol, potentially increasing the risk of hypertension.
Trans fats are particularly dangerous to your health and have been related to heart disease, including an increased risk of:
Trans fats and saturated fats are commonly found in packaged, pre-prepared foods, as well as excessive levels of sugar, sodium, and low-fiber carbohydrates.
To maintain the heart healthy, the AHA recommends limiting saturated and trans fat intake.
Replacing certain animal meals with plant-based substitutes is one approach to lower your saturated fat intake.
Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids are abundant in plant-based foods. Plant-based foods include the following:
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How Toquickly Lower Blood Pressure
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What Causes High Blood Pressure
Food, medicine, lifestyle, age, and genetics can cause high blood pressure. Your doctor can help you find out what might be causing yours. Common factors that can lead to high blood pressure include:
- A diet high in salt, fat, and/or cholesterol.
- Chronic conditions such as kidney and hormone problems, diabetes, and high cholesterol.
- Family history, especially if your parents or other close relatives have high blood pressure.
- Lack of physical activity.
- Tobacco use or drinking too much alcohol.
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