Sunday, 24 February 2013

How to Prevent High Blood Pressure

High blood pressure, also known as hypertension, is a major cause of stroke, heart attack and problems with eyesight. Blood pressure needs to be kept as near as possible to an ideal reading of 120/80. The higher value is called the systolic reading and occurs when the heart contracts and forces blood through the circulatory system. The bottom value is the diastolic reading and occurs when the heart fills in the expansion phase and the blood pressure is at its lowest, which it is 75% of the time. Both values can vary 10% from the normal without significant consequential health problems.

The main causes of high blood pressure are as follows: obesity; emotional factors; kidney problems; high sodium consumption; high sugar intake; arteriosclerosis- a hardening of the arteries which puts more pressure on the heart; atherosclerosis- a narrowing of the arteries which affects the heart’s ability to do its job; an imbalance of electrolytes; malfunctioning adrenal glands; high cholesterol; smoking which constricts all arteries and capillaries; and excess alcohol consumption which damages the liver.

Conventional medicine’s response to high blood pressure with diuretic drugs, or drugs in the blocker range, does not address the underlying cause of the problem and it therefore reoccurs. All of the types of drug prescribed for high blood pressure have serious side effects such as the forced excretion of essential minerals from the body, depression. fatigue and sexual problems. The best approach to stabilising blood pressure levels is to concentrate on diet, exercise, food supplements and other adjunctive measures.

Foods which stabilise blood pressure are cucumbers, onions, artichokes, eggplant, leeks, turnips, red peppers, olives, black currants, cherries, strawberries, raspberries, oranges, grapefruit , grapes, fresh fruit in general, rice, rye and low-fat dairy products such as milk and yogurt. Foods to be avoided are bacon, processed meats, parmesan cheese, caviar, fish in general, beets, spinach, fennel, bananas, coffee and salt.

The herb garlic is very useful in that it is an excellent diuretic, opens up blood vessels and thereby stabilises blood pressure. Other herbs that can be employed in this regard, for the reasons stated, are as follows: parsley is a natural diuretic; hawthorn strengthens the heart muscles; chervil purifies the blood; and marshmallow strengthens the kidneys.

If you cannot get sufficient amount of the foods you need in order to stabilise your blood pressure, as indicate above, then you could use foods supplements to make up for any deficiency. Vitamin C (100 0 mg), taken once daily, acts as a diuretic and helps clear arteries of plague. Fish oil (1000 mg), taken once daily, helps lower blood pressure. Niacin (250 mg) , taken twice daily, opens up arteries thereby alleviating high blood pressure and ensuring a more efficient blood flow. Vitamin E (200 IU) taken once a day also helps lower blood pressure.

Moderate daily exercise can do wonders for your circulation and body in general. All you need to do is engage in it for 30 to 45 minutes daily. Any form of exercise will do such as brisk walking, jogging, swimming, cycling or dancing. You can split the time spend on it op into smaller time periods, if you so wish, such as three 15 minute sessions. It is best to do exercise outdoors if this is possible. Make sure you are well hydrated during any exercise session by drinking plenty of water.

If the cause of your high blood pressure is stress, then you will need to address this. If the stress arises from your circumstances, can you do anything about changing them? If the stress is arising from circumstances beyond your control, can you change you attitude to the cause? A person suffering from stress should endeavour to maintain an optimistic attitude at all times. It has been proven that optimism raises the immune system to such a high degree, that it can combat any abnormal occurrence in the body such as high blood pressure. 

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