Blood pressure readings above 140/90 are classified as hypertension or high blood pressure. Hypertension causes straining of blood vessels and an interruption in the blood flow. There are no specific symptoms, but prolonged hypertension can lead to a heart stroke.
Are you suffering from hypertension? This medical condition occurs when your blood pressure level increases rapidly. Hypertension may occur because of several reasons and it can interfere with the overall functioning of the body affecting different parts. It may lead to severe health hazards, such as stroke, heart failure and heart diseases.
Hypertension affects all the vital organs of the body. Hence, it is important for everyone to keep their blood pressure under check and in case of hypertension, proper management is required to reduce the various risks associated.
Have you given birth to a newborn of late? Or, are you expecting to be a new mother in a couple of months? Whatever the trigger you surely know how motherhood brings about a huge lot of changes within and without. Motherhood, as a gratifying experience gradually works on our view of the world. It significantly shapes perspectives of people closely related to us. Such changes are internal and go way deeper in deciding the kind of parenthood you are ready for. The more obvious changes are however not satisfying. Many women find it strenuous to accept how their body changes every passing week. There are other disadvantageous health issues an expecting woman is known to face. From headaches, to hormonal imbalances, to back pain and fatigue; they face it all. Reportedly, the most prevalent yet distressing problem among pregnant women is that of hypertension. Causal factors leading to hypertension could be many; it is necessary to get diagnosed before your condition is too acute to tackle.
How can you regulate hypertension to keep healthy while pregnant:
Pulmonary hypertension refers to a type of high blood pressure that affects the arteries in the lungs and the heart. Some forms of pulmonary hypertension can be more dangerous than others as they can block the arteries and thus keep the blood from flowing freely through the lungs. All types of pulmonary hypertension are not curable but with treatment, the patient’s quality of life can improve and symptoms can be managed.
Pulmonary hypertension is caused by changes in the cells lining the pulmonary arteries. This can stiffen the artery walls and make them thicker than normal. Extra tissue may also form within the arteries. As this worsens, the space available for blood to flow within the arteries is reduced. This, in turn, causes high blood pressure. Pulmonary hypertension can be categorized into 4 categories on the basis of the factors triggering the condition:
Other Types of Pulmonary Hypertension-
In many cases, patients may not notice any symptoms of pulmonary hypertension in its early stages. In some cases, this can last for years. Symptoms typically worsen as the disease progresses. Common symptoms associated with this condition include:
Treatment for pulmonary hypertension takes the form of medication or surgery. Common types of medication prescribed include Oxygen, diuretics, anticoagulants, calcium channel blockers, and blood vessel dilators. If the condition does not improve with medication, surgery may be advised. This can take the form of an open-heart surgery to create an opening in the atria to relieve the pressure inside the heart or to conduct a lung/heart-lung transplant.
Blood pressure is the thrust exerted by the blood against the artery walls or blood vessels. A certain count of blood pressure is necessary for blood circulation, but anything excessive may prove to be trouble. A reading above the count considered normal; 140/90 (mmHg) may induce symptoms, such as short breath, severe headaches, nosebleeds and anxiety.
Any sort of hypertension during pregnancy can take a toll on the baby.
1. Preeclampsia is a condition wherein, the blood pressure peeks high after 20 weeks of conception accompanied by traces of protein in urine and functional disorders in a few organs.
4. The placenta detaches itself from the uterine wall much prior to the delivery.
6. It restricts the blood flow to the placenta (an organ nourishing the baby), thus cutting off adequate supply of oxygen and nutrients to the fetus.
Signs and symptoms:
1. Excessive protein content in urine
2. Impaired liver functioning
3. Low urine levels
5. Intense pain and tenderness in the upper abdomen
6. Problems in eyesight such as double vision or temporary loss of vision, light sensitivity and blurriness.
7. Abnormal swelling
8. Persistent and a severe headache
Medications do meddle with pregnancy. However, certain medications are considered safe to be used for keeping blood pressure levels under control. These include B blocker or alpha methyl dopa. However, do consult a doctor to get your dosage administered accurately.
Most people associate fibre to be good for the digestive system. It helps to add roughage and therefore helps in avoiding constipation. When we dig deeper, the fibre seems to do good not just to the stomach but to the heart as well. Those who are prone to develop heart disease should make an attempt to include more fibre in their diet and reap the rich benefits it offers.
There are two classifications of fibres
Dietary ones are found in diet products and functional being added fibre through various food supplements. Soluble and insoluble fibre, based on their solubility in water. Most foods contain some amounts of both. The insoluble one has more digestive benefits, as it adds to the roughage. Both types have cardiac benefits.
Read on to know some of the benefits of fibres:
High-fibre diet mainly reduces cholesterol which helps in multiple ways to maintain not just a healthy body but also improves the overall quality of life.
Foods rich in fibre -
Hypertension or high blood pressure in common parlance is caused by irregular blood circulation in the blood vessels. High blood pressure has been an established cause for several fatal and critical heart diseases. Middle aged individuals are more prone to heart diseases caused by high blood pressure. Doctors also caution those with stressful lifestyles to keep the blood pressure levels in control. While there are prescribed drugs aimed at curing high blood pressure troubles, a large number of people are reposing their trust in homeopathy for treating high blood pressure.
Among a long drawn process of cures, homeopathic treatments are extremely effective and trustworthy methods:
Over the past few decades, lifestyle disorders have been on a mercurial rise. Sedentary lifestyle, amalgamated with unhealthy eating habits has been the wrecker in chief. Lack of proper awareness has made the situation even worse. The mad and competitive rush to reach the pinnacle has serious health implications. Almost every second individual suffer from some kind of lifestyle disorders. Unhealthy and stressful lifestyle has resulted in increased incidences of Obesity and Diabetes (Type II).
Individuals from all age groups have been affected by obesity and diabetes. Anxiety and depressionare also on the rise. Other lifestyle disorders like Alzheimer's disease, Stroke, Arteriosclerosis, Hypertension, Hypothyroidism, Cancer (mostly skin and lung), Cardiac problems, Renal failure, Chronic Liver problems, cannot be neglected either. The lifestyle disorders, if not treated, can cause havoc, changing the entire dynamics of a person's life.
Many lifestyle disorders occur because of the occupation we are in (Occupational lifestyle disorders). Children, who are supposed to indulge in more physical activities and outdoor games, are happy fidgeting around with their favourite gadgets. Fast foods have long replaced the healthy, nutritious foods. Children as young as you can imagine, appear to be obese or diabetic. Stress and anxiety can also trigger a number of lifestyle disorders. Thus, getting to the root cause is an important deciding factor for an effective treatment.
Homeopathy does not treat a disease or an ailment superficially. It believes in curing the patient in a disease rather than a disease in the patient. Homeopathic treatment has a more holistic approach. It takes the miasms (hereditary or acquired) into consideration while dealing with a particular symptom. The homeopathic medicines are mainly prepared by dynamization or potentization. This greatly minimizes the toxic and harmful effects of the drug (crude), thereby increasing the inherent curative effectiveness of the medicines. Thus the homeopathic medicines have negligible or no side effects.
Diseases like diabetes, hypertension, hypothyroidism or depression can be successfully treated and cured with homeopathy. In addition to treating the disease, homeopathic medicines go a long way to improve and enhance the patient's overall immune system. The improved immune system works effectively to keep a lot of diseases at bay. Homeopathy ensures that a person's physical, mental and emotional well being is well taken care off. This greatly helps to treat and control a number of stress related disorders. Homeopathy cannot work miracles. Treating a disease from the grass root level can be time consuming. With homeopathic treatment, one needs to have patience.
Homeopathic treatment, if followed diligently can help in the treatment of a number of lifestyle disorders.
Steps to control high blood pressure
Lifestyle plays an important role in treating your high blood pressure. If you successfully control your blood pressure with a healthy lifestyle, you might avoid, delay or reduce the need for medication.
Here are few lifestyle changes you can make to lower your blood pressure and keep it down.
1. Lose extra pounds and watch your waistline
Blood pressure often increases as weight increases. Being overweight also can cause disrupted breathing while you sleep (sleep apnea), which further raises your blood pressure.
Weight loss is one of the most effective lifestyle changes for controlling blood pressure. Losing just 10 pounds (4.5 kilograms) can help reduce your blood pressure.
Besides shedding pounds, you generally should also keep an eye on your waistline. Carrying too much weight around your waist can put you at greater risk of high blood pressure.
• Men are at risk if their waist measurement is greater than 40 inches (102 centimeters).
• Women are at risk if their waist measurement is greater than 35 inches (89 centimeters).
These numbers vary among ethnic groups.
2. Exercise regularly
Regular physical activity — at least 30 minutes most days of the week — can lower your blood pressure by 4 to 9 millimeters of mercury (mm Hg). It's important to be consistent because if you stop exercising, your blood pressure can rise again.
If you have slightly high blood pressure (prehypertension), exercise can help you avoid developing full-blown hypertension. If you already have hypertension, regular physical activity can bring your blood pressure down to safer levels.
The best types of exercise for lowering blood pressure include walking, jogging, cycling, swimming or dancing. Strength training also can help reduce blood pressure.
3. Eat a healthy diet
Eating a diet that is rich in whole grains, fruits, vegetables and low-fat dairy products and skimps on saturated fat and cholesterol can lower your blood pressure by up to 14 mm Hg. This eating plan is known as the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet.
• 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.
• Consider boosting potassium. Potassium can lessen the effects of sodium on blood pressure. The best source of potassium is food, such as fruits and vegetables, rather than supplements.
• Be a smart shopper. Read food labels when you shop and stick to your healthy-eating plan when you're dining out, too.
4. Reduce sodium in your diet
Even a small reduction in the sodium in your diet can reduce blood pressure by 2 to 8 mm Hg.
The effect of sodium intake on blood pressure varies among groups of people. In general, limit sodium to less than 2,300 milligrams (mg) a day or less. However, a lower sodium intake — 1,500 mg a day or less — is appropriate for people with greater salt sensitivity, including:
• Anyone age 51 or older
• Anyone diagnosed with high blood pressure, diabetes or chronic kidney disease
To decrease sodium in your diet, consider these tips:
• Read food labels. If possible, choose low-sodium alternatives of the foods and beverages you normally buy.
• Eat fewer processed foods. Only a small amount of sodium occurs naturally in foods. Most sodium is added during processing.
• Don't add salt. Just 1 level teaspoon of salt has 2,300 mg of sodium. Use herbs or spices to add flavor to your food.
5. Limit the amount of alcohol you drink
Alcohol can be both good and bad for your health. In small amounts, it can potentially lower your blood pressure by 2 to 4 mm Hg.
Drinking more than moderate amounts of alcohol can actually raise blood pressure by several points. It can also reduce the effectiveness of blood pressure medications.
6. Quit smoking
Each cigarette you smoke increases your blood pressure for many minutes after you finish. Quitting smoking helps your blood pressure return to normal. People who quit smoking, regardless of age have substantial increases in life expectancy.
7. Cut back on caffeine
The role caffeine plays in blood pressure is still debated. Caffeine can raise blood pressure by as much as 10 mm Hg in people who rarely consume it, but there is little to no strong effect on blood pressure in habitual coffee drinkers.
Although the effects of chronic caffeine ingestion on blood pressure aren't clear, the possibility of a slight increase in blood pressure exists.
To see if caffeine raises your blood pressure, check your pressure within 30 minutes of drinking a caffeinated beverage. If your blood pressure increases by 5 to 10 mm Hg, you may be sensitive to the blood pressure raising effects of caffeine.
8. Reduce your stress
Chronic stress is an important contributor to high blood pressure. Occasional stress also can contribute to high blood pressure if you react to stress by eating unhealthy food, drinking alcohol or smoking.
Take some time to think about what causes you to feel stressed, such as work, family, finances or illness. Once you know what's causing your stress, consider how you can eliminate or reduce stress.
If you can't eliminate all of your stressors, you can at least cope with them in a healthier way. Try to:
• Change your expectations. Give yourself time to get things done. Learn to say no and to live within manageable limits. Try to learn to accept things you can't change.
• Think about problems under your control and make a plan to solve them. You could talk to your boss about difficulties at work or to family members about problems at home.
• Know your stress triggers. Avoid whatever triggers you can. For example, spend less time with people who bother you or avoid driving in rush-hour traffic.
• Make time to relax and to do activities you enjoy. Take 15 to 20 minutes a day to sit quietly and breathe deeply. Try to intentionally enjoy what you do rather than hurrying through your "relaxing activities" at a stressful pace.
• Practice gratitude. Expressing gratitude to others can help reduce stressful thoughts.
9. Monitor your blood pressure at home and see your doctor regularly
Home monitoring can help you keep tabs on your blood pressure, make certain your lifestyle changes are working, and alert you and your doctor to potential health complications. Blood pressure monitors are available widely and without a prescription.
Regular visits with your doctor are also key to controlling your blood pressure. If your blood pressure isn't well-controlled, your doctor will likely want to see you more frequently.
10. Get support
Supportive family and friends can help improve your health. They may encourage you to take care of yourself, drive you to the doctor's office or embark on an exercise program with you to keep your blood pressure low.
If you find you need support beyond your family and friends, consider joining a support group. This may put you in touch with people who can give you an emotional or morale boost and who can offer practical tips to cope with your condition.
Hypertension or increased blood pressure is one of the modern lifestyle diseases. The changing lifestyles including altered dietary habits and lack of physical activity are the main reasons for the high incidence of hypertension. With this, it brings a host of complications including other chronic diseases like diabetes, kidney failure, risks of stroke and heart attacks.
Eat walnuts: As most books and media depict, heart disease is directly related to physical reaction towards stress. Regular eating of walnuts helps control this response, thereby controlling blood pressure. It is also a great source of antioxidants and fibre, which adds to its heart-healthy features.
Load up on minerals: Eating a diet rich in calcium, magnesium, and potassium is extremely beneficial for the heart. Sweet potatoes, bananas, dry fruits, dairy products, etc., have shown to reduce blood pressure extremely well in various experiments.
Avoid salt: While the natural sea salt is almost out of use, most of us have switched to the processed variety, which is devoid of all minerals. This is one of the major contributors for increased blood pressure. Studies have shown that reducing salt intake helps in a big way in controlling blood pressure. Most of us are also used to adding extra salt so the food tastes better. This should be avoided. With increased consumption of processed food items, everything from bread to cookies to cheese has salt, which also should be reduced, and if possible, avoided.
Have a colourful meal: Load up your plate with peppers, berries, dry fruits, and organic fruits and vegetables. Pomegranate juice is believed to control angiotensin, converting enzyme, which is responsible for controlling hypertension. They are also rich in antioxidants and help control blood pressure by reducing inflammation.
Know your cholesterol: While cholesterol is generally used with a negative connotation, it is not always true. There is good and bad cholesterol and the bad one should be avoided. Watch out for labels, and ensure you are eating less of the bad cholesterol. Good cholesterol is required for the production of hormones and proper functioning of the body.
Watch your medicines: While it is easy to just pop an ibuprofen when there is a headache or a back ache, it is advisable to watch out. These are best avoided in the long run, as they can induce hypertension and induce heart disease.