highbp

What is Blood Pressure?

Blood Pressure is the pressure of circulating blood on the walls of blood vessels. Blood Pressure indicates the well-being of your heart’s health. High Blood Pressure (HBP) synonymous to Hypertension is a very common and dreaded ailment these days. Blood Pressure is the immediate result of careless life style and stress prevailing in the present scenario. 

It is measured using a device called as Sphygmomanometer. Every measured reading of blood pressure consists of 2 parts; Systolic Pressure Reading and Diastolic Pressure Reading.

Systolic refers to the Highest level your blood pressure reaches when your heart beats and the diastolic refers to the lowest level your blood pressure reaches as your heart relaxes between heart beats.

So, the range of normal Blood Pressure is 120mmHg for Systolic and 80mmHg for Diastolic. For proper functioning of body organs and controlled pressure it should be in the above specified range.

Raised pressure readings indicate High Blood Pressure or Hypertension. Even if you don’t have a high blood pressure at the moment, it is important to keep your BP as low as you can. The higher your blood pressure higher the risk of heart diseases.

~Mehmet Oz

American-Turkish Television Actor

If you don’t know your blood pressure, it’s like not knowing the value of your company.

How to lower High Blood Pressure?

  1. Exercise

One needs to do regular exercise for maintaining BP. As exercise helps in boosting your metabolism which in turns prevents deposition of fats and its derivatives in the blood vessels. Otherwise slow metabolism could result in thickening of blood vessels. So, exercise needs to be given importance especially by the patients of Hypertension.

Types of Exercises

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Normal Body Movement

Household chores, such as mowing the lawn, raking leaves, gardening or scrubbing the floor

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Aerobic Exercise

Walking, Jogging, Swimming, Bicycling, Climbing stairs or any physical activity that increases your heart and breathing rates. (Heavy Exercise is not recommended for elders)

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Sports

The Department of Health and Human Services recommends getting at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic/sports activity

  2. Healthy Diet

One should abide by the practice of eating healthy every now and then. Because what you eat completely decides the state of your body. Include more and more fruits and vegetables in your diet. As these are absolute source of all nutrients and minerals needed by our body. Also, their complete digestion takes places which is not possible in the case of junk that we eat.

Tips for Healthy Diet

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Keep a food diary.

Writing down what you eat, even for just a week, can shed surprising light on your true eating habits. Monitor what you eat, how much, when and why.

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Consider boosting potassium

Potassium can lessen the effects of sodium on BP. The best source of potassium is food, such as fruits and vegetables, rather than supplements. Talk to your doctor about the potassium level that's best for you.

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Be a smart shopper

Read food labels when you shop and stick to your healthy-eating plan when you're dining out, too.

  3. Quit Smoking

Basically, when you consume nicotine your blood vessels get damaged from inside. As a result, your heart gets insufficient amount of oxygen, resulting in the increased heart rate and BP. So, one should either avoid or quit smoking completely. So, try to nix your nicotine addiction.

Some Facts!

1 L
DEATHS​

High blood pressure, high blood sugar and indoor pollution together contributed to 33 deaths premature deaths in India in 2013

1 %
Death Percentage

High blood pressure in 1990 was the most serious threat to the health of people, but deaths increased up by 106% in 2013.

  4. Reduce Stress

Stress is the leading cause of hypertension. One should not take stress. Chronic stress may contribute to high BP. Occasional stress also can contribute to high BP if you react to stress by eating unhealthy food, drinking alcohol or smoking.

Tips to reduce stress:

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Change your expectations

Plan your day and focus on your priorities. Avoid trying to do too much and learn to say no.

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Make time to relax

Make time for enjoyable activities or hobbies in your schedule, such as taking a walk, cooking or volunteering.

stress
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Avoid stress triggers.

Try to avoid triggers when you can. Avoid people who cause you stress if possible.

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Practice gratitude

Expressing gratitude to others can help reduce your stress.

  5. Reduce Weight

One should focus on reducing weight and keeping it constant in the described BMI (Body Mass Index) range. Being Overweight can cause disrupted breathing, which results in high BP.  Even a minor reduction in weight has been proved in the detrimental reduction of BP.

In General

Men Waist

Men's waist should not increase 40 inches (102 centimeters).

Women Waist

Women's waist should not increase 35 inches (89 centimeters).

  6. Reduce Sodium Consumption

 A person having high BP should avoid consumption of salt. Eating salt raises the amount of Sodium in your blood stream which in turn reduces the ability of kidneys to remove water. This results in higher blood pressure. If we increase the intake of potassium it will lessen the effect of sodium on blood pressure.

salt

  7. DASH Diet

Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension diet can lower your BP up to a remarkable extent. This diet includes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low fat dairy products, lean meat, fishes, nuts. The diet is low in red meat, salt, added sugars and fat. Beyond reducing BP, the DASH diet offers a number of potential benefits, including weight loss and reduced cancer risk.

dash

  8. Reduce Alcohol Consumption

One should reduce alcohol consumption as it leads to sudden strokes or seizures to the person consuming it. Alcohol Consumption even worsens the problem of High BP.

alcohol

Content Writer Anjali Duhan.

Sources: Mayoclinic