Hypertension, also called high blood pressure, is a persistent rise in your blood pressure. Hypertension can quietly damage your body for years before symptoms develop. Uncontrolled high blood pressure can lead to disability, poor quality of life, fatal heart attack or stroke. But treatment and lifestyle changes can control your blood pressure to reduce the risk of life threatening complications.
Lifestyle Suitable For Patients With High Blood Pressure
Hypertension is not a death sentence. There is a lifestyle suitable for patients with high blood pressure. So if you have been diagnosed with hypertension by your physician, here are some tips that will help you live healthy and enjoy your life to the fullest.
Watch your salt intake
Salt causes fluid retention which can increase your blood pressure. It is advisable that anyone with hypertension should reduce the quantity of salt intake. Instead of using salt, you should use spices to give flavour to your meal. If that is not possible for you, The American Heart Association suggest you stick to not more than 2300 milligram (mg) of sodium a day, which is equivalent to 1 teaspoon of salt. But your limit should be 1500 mg of sodium a day.
Exercise regularly and watch your weight
If you can try your best to always do exercise daily for at least 20-30 minutes everyday, or 3 times in a week, it will help in maintaining your weight and drop your blood pressure by about 5-8 mmHg for those who have high blood pressure. Exercise also plays a role in areas management by helping to ease stress. Some exercises you can do may include walking, domestic chores, jogging, cycling, swimming and dancing.
Try the DASH eating plan
DASH stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension. It has to do with adhering to dietary regimen. You are expected to eat food rich in whole grains, vegetables, fruits, low-fat diary products, cholesterol and saturated fats. This can lower blood pressure by 11 mmHg for those who have hypertension. Usually its not easy to change your dietary plan, but with this eating plan, you can adopt a healthy dietary lifestyle. Talk to your doctor or dietitian about the best plan for you.
Reduce the quantity of alcohol intake
Taking of alcohol has a negative effect. When you exceed the normal quantity which is (men 2 bottles a day and women 1 bottle a day), it increases blood pressure. Excessive alcohol can also reduce the effectiveness of blood pressure drugs.
Each stick of cigarette you take have a chance of raising your blood pressure. But when you quit smoking, it helps your blood pressure to reduce to normal and you can live longer than people who smoke. Research have shown that most people who smokes are at risk of developing heart diseases, lung cancer and are liable to die young.
Reduce your stress
When you are stressed out, it contributes to the increase in your blood pressure. Research is still ongoing on how stress affect blood pressure. Each individual react to stress differently, so just take some time to find out what makes you feel stressed e.g it may be work, joblessness, finances or illness, then look for a way to eliminate your stressors. If you can’t eliminate them completely, try these tips;
- Change your expectations and Just avoid doing too much work. Pick your work in order of priority and also learn to say no to certain things you can’t do.
- Focus on issues you can control and make plans to solve them.
- Avoid stress triggers.
- Make time to relax or do those activities you enjoy.
- Practice gratitude. Expressing gratitude can help you reduce stress.
Reduce caffeine intake
People react to caffeine differently. So try to check your blood pressure 30 minutes after consumption of coffee drink. If it raises your blood pressure, then try to avoid it. In some individuals, it does nothing to their blood pressure, so its very important you know your body.
Track your progress
You can ask your health provider about getting a blood pressure machine at home to help monitor your blood pressure. Always adhere to drug regimen by taking your drugs regularly as prescribed and also keeping to appointment dates with your doctor.
Loose some weight
Being overweight usually disrupts breathing whiles sleeping, called sleep apnoea. This is likely to increase your blood pressure. Loosing weight has been the most effective lifestyle changes for blood Pressure control. Men are at risk if their waist measurement is greater than 40 inches (102 centimeters), whiles women are at risk if their waist measurement is greater than 35 inches (89 centimeters). So to be on a safer side, ask your healthcare provider for an accurate waist measurement for you.
A supportive family and friends can help you do better. Through their encouragement, they can even embark on an exercise training to help keep your blood pressure normal. But if you don’t get much support from family and friends, you can join a support group that can help boost your morale and provide tips that can help you cope with your health.