Tips To Prevent & Reduce High Blood Pressure
More than 3 million people living in the US are diagnosed with high blood pressure every single year. Thankfully, certain medications as well as diet and lifestyle changes can help prevent and treat high blood pressure.
High blood pressure (also known as hypertension) is a condition in which your blood is placing too much pressure on your artery walls. A reading higher than 140/90 is considered high blood pressure, and anything higher than 180/120 is considered severe high blood pressure.
Signs Of High Blood Pressure
In many cases, high blood pressure presents no symptoms at all, which is why preventative medical exams are so important. You should have your blood pressure monitored regularly in order to ensure you don’t have hypertension. If left untreated, hypertension can lead to stroke and even death.
There are a lot of misconceptions about symptoms associated with high blood pressure. Maybe people assume you experience frequent headaches, dizziness or shakiness with high blood pressure. The goal is to pinpoint hypertension before it ever gets to the point that you experience associated symptoms.
In most cases, people only start to experience symptoms of high blood pressure after entering dangerous blood pressure levels. Systolic is anything 180 or higher and diastolic is anything 110 or higher, both of which generate obvious symptoms due to hypertensive crisis.
Symptoms of hypertensive crisis include:
- Severe headache
- Shortness of breath
If your body goes into hypertensive crisis you need emergency medical treatment right away.
6 Ways To Treat High Blood Pressure
If you already have hypertension you don’t need to hit the panic button just yet. By making a few lifestyle changes and taking the right medication you can get your blood pressure back on track.
Here are 6 proven ways to treat high blood pressure….
1. Shed Some Pounds
Loose weight and maintain your healthiest frame. Weight gain increases your risk for high blood pressure. Men are at the greatest risk if their waistline measures 40-inches or more. Women are at the greatest risk if their waistline measures 35-inches or more. Remember, it’s not about being skinny but about being healthy.
2. Up Your Exercise Routine
Exercise for at least 30 minutes 5-6 days a week. The more exercise you get in, the better! Biking, jogging, walking, swimming and dancing are all great forms of exercise to help reduce blood pressure.
3. Eat A Healthy, Balanced Diet
Follow the DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) diet with detailed servings of whole grains, vegetables, fruits and low-fat dairy. Reduce your intake or remove foods all together that are high in sodium and saturated fats. Add potassium rich foods to your diet, as potassium is known to help combat the negative side effects of sodium on blood pressure. Keeping a food diary will help you identify progress as well as which changes work best.
4. Reduce Salt In Your Diet
Reduce sodium and salt from your diet. Salt is a silent killer but it impacts everyone differently. Some people can process more salt than others. The average guidelines recommend around 2,300 milligrams of sodium per day. If you are trying to get high blood pressure in check you’ll want to follow a low-sodium diet closer to 1,500 mg of sodium per day. Once you start reading labels it’s easy to see how sodium intake can get out of control even if you are eating healthy portions.
5. Drink Less Alcohol
Reduce alcohol consumption. Small amounts of alcohol are actually good for you, just like salt. Yet, anything over one drink a day borders too much of a good thing and may increase your blood pressure.
6. Take Medication For Hypertension
Take Medication, your doctor may prescribe you a medication to help lower your blood pressure.
How To Prevent High Blood Pressure
Even if your blood pressure is at a healthy level, you should still follow a low-sodium, healthy diet and get plenty of exercise. The standard American diet and sedentary lifestyle promotes the development of high blood pressure. That means you must work extra hard to prevent yourself from becoming one of the millions of Americans diagnosed with hypertension every year.
Tips to prevent developing high blood pressure include:
- Eat a healthy, balanced diet with the right amount of calories for your frame and lifestyle.
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Reduce salt and sodium from your diet, only eat recommended daily amounts
- Reduce how much alcohol you drink
- Exercise at least 5 times per week
- Get your blood pressure checked annually
Visit Broward’s leading Urgent Medical Center today to have your blood pressure checked! Set up your next appointment online here: Web Check In.