Hypertension also called high blood pressure, is a long-term medical condition in which the blood pressure in the arteries is consistently elevated. It can often lead to severe health complications and also increases the risk of strokes, heart diseases.
High blood pressure generally develops over the course of many years. Fortunately, high blood pressure can be easily detected and treated upon.
Lifestyle changes can help you control and prevent high blood pressure, even if you're taking blood pressure medication. Here's what you can do:
Eat healthy foods
Diet should focus on fruits, vegetables, whole grains, poultry, fish and low-fat dairy foods.
Make sure that your diet has plenty of potassium, which can help prevent and control high blood pressure.
The diet should exclude saturated fat and trans fat.
Decrease the salt in your diet
Limit sodium intake to less than 2,300 milligrams (mg) a day.
Reduce salt consumption by using a saltshaker.
Do check the salt content in Processed food such as canned soups or frozen foods
Maintain a healthy weight
If you are obese, then consdier reducing your weight. Lower weight can help in controling high blood pressure
Your blood pressure can be reduced by approx. 1 mm Hg with each kilogram of weight you lose.
Increase physical activity
Regular physical activity can help lower your blood pressure, manage stress, reduce your risk of several health problems and keep your weight under control.
Aim for at least 2 hours a week of moderate aerobic activity or 1.5 hours minutes a week of vigorous aerobic activity, or a combination of moderate and vigorous activity.
Aim to do muscle-strengthening exercises at least two days a week
Alcohol can raise your blood pressure. If you choose to drink alcohol, do so in moderation.
For healthy adults, that means up to one drink a day for women, and up to two drinks a day for men. One drink equals 12 ounces of beer, 5 ounces of wine or 1.5 ounces of 80-proof liquor.
Tobacco can injure blood vessel walls and speed up the process of the buildup of plaque in the arteries.
If you smoke, ask your doctor to help you quit.
Reduce stress as much as possible.
Practice healthy coping techniques, such as muscle relaxation, deep breathing or meditation.
Getting regular physical activity and plenty of sleep can help, too.
Monitor your blood pressure at home
Home blood pressure monitoring can help you keep closer tabs on your blood pressure, show if medication is working, and even alert you and your doctor to potential complications.
Home blood pressure monitoring isn't a substitute for visits to your doctor, and home blood pressure monitors may have some limitations. Even if you get normal readings, don't stop or change your medications or alter your diet without talking to your doctor first.
If your blood pressure is under control, check with your doctor about how often you need to check it.
Practice relaxation or slow, deep breathing
Practice taking deep, slow breaths to help relax. There are some devices available that promote slow, deep breathing.
According to the American Heart Association, device-guided breathing may be a reasonable nondrug option for lowering blood pressure, especially when anxiety accompanies high blood pressure or standard treatments aren't well-tolerated.
Control blood pressure during pregnancy
If you're a woman with high blood pressure, discuss with your doctor how to control your blood pressure during pregnancy.
These are a few lifestyle alterations you can adapt for yourself to prevent high blood pressure.
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