Blood Pressure - The Silent Killer!

High blood pressure refers to when your blood pressure is HIGHER than 140/90. It is also called the “SILENT KILLER” because you can’t feel if you have high blood pressure. There are no particular symptoms.

High blood pressure cooks up a storm inside the body. It flows through the body and wherever it goes it may cause some damage. When the pressure inside the veins and arteries are too high, your heart must also work extra hard to be able to pump out the blood.

RISK GROUPS

Some people are at a higher risk to develop high blood pressure. The risk groups are:

  • Genetics
  • Obese or overweight persons
  • Poor dietary habits (high intake of salt, salt-containing products and processed food)
  • Smoking
  • High alcohol intake
  • Little/no physical activity
  • People with high stress levels
diet tips blood pressure

IT MAY LEAD TO...

We should take special care if we belong to a risk group, or if we have hypertension. If left untreated, hypertension can lead to serious problems, such as:

  • Vision problems
  • Stroke
  • Blood vessel damage
  • Kidney failure
  • Heart attack or heart failure
High blood pressure is easily managed by healthy eating habits and lifestyle modifications.

TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF

1. Diet
Following the DASH diet is the best dietary intervention. It stands for Dietary Approach to Stop Hypertension (DASH). It basically includes the guidelines of more fresh vegetables, fruits, plant based fats and whole grains while decreasing processed and high salt items.

2. Exercise
  • Exercise is essential in maintaining healthy blood pressure levels. It also supports good heart function by enabling the heart to pump STRONGER despite the high blood pressure.
  • Be as active as you can - every day! Take the stairs; walk fast in the shopping malls; park far from the entrance.
  • Aim for 30 minutes exercise every day (it can be broken up into shorter periods)
  • Avoid sitting for longer than 1 hour at a time.

3. Lifestyle
  • Quit smoking; maintain a moderate alcohol intake (maximum 1 drink for ladies per day; and 2 drinks for men per day)
  • Reduce stress levels: It is essential to destress daily. Find a hobby to assist with managing high stress levels: listen to music; journal; exercise; hang out with friends.
  • Maintain a healthy body weight. At a healthy body weight, the blood pressure usually decreases or will respond a lot better to the treatment.

These tips will decrease your risks of getting hypertension and help you to easily manage high blood pressure. Get a move on; get cooking and get healthy!

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