High blood pressure or hypertension is a condition that causes the blood to flow through the blood vessels under high pressure on a consistent basis. This persistent pressure on the walls of the blood vessels causes damage to them and affects their function. It makes your heart pump blood to the blood vessels with great force, which can also damage your heart. Hypertension can potentiate the risk of atherosclerosis, which is the hardening of the blood vessels, heart failure, kidney damage, or even stroke.
What is Normal Blood Pressure?
Ideally, the blood pressure can fall in the range between 90/60 mm Hg and 120/80 mm Hg. Low blood pressure, also known as hypotension, can be indicated when the blood pressure falls below 90/60 mm Hg whereas, in case of high blood pressure or hypertension, the readings will exceed the normal range and rises beyond 140/90 mm Hg.
Low blood pressure is not quite common, and it can be a symptom of various underlying conditions including dehydration, or heart problems. It can also be a cause of some medicinal side reactions.
Factors Leading to High Blood Pressure
High blood pressure can stem from a lethargic lifestyle and unhealthy choices that have an extremely damaging role. A sedentary lifestyle, lack of physical activity, improper diet or nutrition, smoking, excessive consumption of alcohol regularly, etc. can be inviting factors for such disease. High blood pressure is a slowly progressing condition that causes damage to your health gradually. Let us have a look at these factors one by one:
- Poor Diet – Foods that are loaded with unhealthy fats, high cholesterol, and excessive calories can affect your health by leading to plaque formation in the blood vessels. This build-up narrows the passages of the blood vessels and clogs them. It hinders the flow of blood through them and as a result, the pressure through the narrowed blood vessels rises, ultimately affecting the heart’s endurance.
- Excessive Sodium – Too much sodium or salt consumption can increase fluid retention which puts extra pressure on the blood vessels. It increases the risk of heart damage and stroke. Hence, sodium-rich, or salty food must be avoided.
- Health Conditions – Some medical conditions such as obesity or weight gain and diabetes mellitus can also potentiate the risk of high blood pressure. Such diseases mostly degrade cardiovascular function and give rise to high blood pressure. Once the cardiovascular system gets affected, the individual may also experience sexual disorders. Mostly, men with cardiovascular disease find it difficult to get or sustain an erection. Vidalista 20 is used for the treatment of impotence or ED in men. Hence, high blood pressure can also increase the risk of erectile dysfunction (ED) or impotence in men.
- Lack of Exercise – The kind of lifestyle you are leading mostly requires you to sit in one place with little to no physical activity. Such a lifestyle contributes to blood pressure problems as lack of physical activity causes the blood vessels’ hardening due to plaque formation in the blood vessels. The plaque thus formed blocks the blood flow through the arteries and increases your blood pressure to dangerous limits.
- Smoking – Smoking can injure the inner lining of your blood vessels and lead to atherosclerosis which is a condition wherein the arteries get hardened. The lining of blood vessels called endothelium secretes nitric oxide, which is a chemical that ensures the health of the blood vessels. However, smoking depletes the nitric oxide and causes plaque build-up in the blood vessels which narrows them and limits the blood flow, thereby increasing the blood pressure.
- Alcohol – Drinking alcohol within safe limits is okay. However, it becomes problematic when it exceeds the limit. Alcohol is also responsible for decreasing the production of nitric oxide in the blood vessels which leads to the clogging and narrowing of the blood vessels due to plaque formation. Hence, alcohol increases the risk of high blood pressure.
Symptoms of High Blood Pressure
Mostly, individuals with high blood pressure remain asymptomatic even when their blood pressure reaches dangerously high levels. Such individuals show no sign of high blood pressure for years. However, such high blood pressure can cause a gradual rise in other health conditions such as cardiovascular disease and heart failure. Some people may experience some mild symptoms like headaches, breathing troubles, and nosebleeds. Note that, these symptoms can occur when your blood pressure reaches dangerous levels which can be even life-threatening.
Complications of High Blood Pressure
If the blood flows through the arteries under high pressure persistently, the individual may develop severe health complications such as heart failure, kidney damage, heart attack, stroke, aneurysm (weakening of blood vessels), eye problems, and dementia due to decreased blood flow to the brain. Also, hypertension can affect an individual’s cognitive abilities and they may struggle to understand and perform day-to-day tasks.
The blood pressure needs to be controlled otherwise this continuous flow of blood with high pressure will eventually damage the body’s organs. It is one of the most common diseases in adult individuals which needs to be treated to prevent further damage.
How Can I Reduce the Risk of High Blood Pressure?
A healthy lifestyle is of utmost necessity while lowering the risk of high blood pressure and its associated complications. Let us go through some lifechanging factors that can surely benefit you in a long run:
1. Control your diet
Include plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables in your diet and limit the amount of sodium or salt. You must include foods that are a rich source of potassium such as bananas, spinach, watermelon, sweet potato, legumes (chickpeas, soybean, peanut, and lentils), potatoes, beets, pomegranate, and others. Since potassium is a powerful mineral that is needed by your body to perform essential functions like maintaining blood pressure in the normal range, nourishing your cells, etc.
Eat a clean and nutritious diet. Do not consume foods that are ladened with unhealthy fats such as processed foods, fried foods, baked, and some dairy products as well.
2. Maintain a Healthy Weight and Exercise Regularly
Obesity and weight gain can potentiate the risk of high blood pressure and it in turn gives rise to other health issues. It is necessary to manage weight to prevent your body from diseases which is why you need to perform physical activity on a regular basis. You should engage in aerobic as well as some anaerobic exercises which will help you to lose weight and remain fit.
3. Say no to alcohol and cigarette
Rather than limiting their use, try to avoid them completely. Doing so will certainly pay off.
4. Overcome stress
You must learn to manage your stress by simply resting, meditating, listening to good music, or exercising. Managing stress will improve your physical as well as mental health.
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