What Causes High Blood Pressure
Watch Your Salt, To Keep a Healthy Heart—High Blood Pressure or Hypertension:
Human blood pressure rises and falls throughout the day but high blood pressure occurs when blood flows through the blood vessels with a greater force than usual. The blood pressure is measured by two readings-
Systolic- Pressure in the arteries where contraction of heart occurs
Diastolic- Pressure in the arteries when relaxation of the heart takes place
Normal B.P –Systolic below 120 and diastolic below 80mmHg
Pre hypertension- systolic-121-139 and diastolic 81-89mmHg
Hypertension stage 1-systolic- 140-159 and diastolic 90-99mmHg
Hypertension stage 2-systolic- 160 or higher and diastolic 100 or higher mmHg
Hypertensive crisis- systolic- above 180 and diastolic 110 mmHg
Cause of High BP
In this condition the blood vessels have a great amount of pressure. In this condition blood is pumped forcefully through the network of arteries and veins. The arteries are made of muscle and tissue which stretch and allow ease flow of blood but in high blood pressure since blood is pumped with a lot of force, it puts a strain on these arteries as they have to overstretch and in the long run this may lead to a Heart Attack.
Symptoms of High Blood Pressure
Shortness of breath
Bleeding of the nose
Blood in the urine
Causes of High Blood Pressure-
Let’s discuss what are the underlying problems which can lead to high blood pressure?
- Age- Higher the age greater the risk of developing high blood pressure
- Family history- If any close family members have high blood pressure one has a greater chance of developing it.
- Temperature- Chances of developing high blood pressure is more during cold weather than hot weather.
- Ethnic background- African and South Asian races are more prone to develop high blood pressure compared to Caucasian or Amerindian race.
- Obesity and overweight- Obese and overweight people are more prone to develop hypertension compared to normal people.
- Sedentary lifestyle- People who do no physical activity has a greater chance to develop high blood pressure.
- Smoking- Smokers are more likely to develop hypertension as smoking causes narrowing of blood vessels.
- Alcohol intake- People who indulge in alcoholism are prone to develop hypertension compared to non alcoholic people.
- Salt intake- Intake of too much salt in the diet can cause high blood pressure.
- High fat diet- Taking too much of animal fat in the diet can cause high blood pressure.
- Mental stress- Keeping too much stress can gradually lead to high blood pressure.
- Diabetes- People suffering from diabetes have a greater risk of developing high blood pressure.
- Pregnancy- Pregnant women are at a high risk to develop hypertension compared to normal women.
Prevention and Cure-
A few lifestyle and diet changes can help prevent and cure hypertension
- Regular Exercise- 30minutes of moderate exercise can keep hypertension at bay and if one develops it then physical activity will lower it.
- Weight Reduction- losing weight through healthy diet can help control high blood pressure
- Stress Management- doing meditation, yoga, pranayam, muscle relaxation and massage can help control high B.P.
- Getting Rid of Vices- getting rid of smoking and drinking alcohol can help people to control high B.P and also keep it at bay.
- Diet- Certain foods help in lowering B.P. Add more servings of fruits and vegetables in the diet.
Let's Discuss What Fruits and Vegetables Can Be Consumed to Lower High Blood Pressure
Blueberries and strawberries contain antioxidants which help to lower high B.P, Bananas contain Potassium which helps in the management of hypertension, drinking beet juice, cocoa rich chocolate helps to reduce hypertension, Kiwis, Watermelon all help to lower B.P
Vegetables like cabbage, collard greens, fennel, kale, lettuce, garlic, spinach and mustard are useful in controlling hypertension
Oats contain beta-glucan fiber helps in lowering high blood pressure.
Some fermented foods and pulses also help in lowering high blood pressure. Yogurt, pomegranate juice and cinnamon are quite useful in lowering B.P. Sugars and processed foods have to be avoided to get rid of this problem. Eating healthy, natural foods are the key to good health and keeping this problem under control.