Processed, canned and packaged foods have high sugar and salt content and increased consumption of the same has led us to a stage where high blood pressure has become common in youngsters too. Consumption of high salt is the causing monster of hypertension– the silent killer. Hypertension or high blood pressure or BP is a condition in which the blood vessels have persistently raised the pressure, putting them under increased stress. The higher the pressure, the harder the heart has to pump, which is why it leads to cardiovascular problems. Blood pressure higher than 140 over 90 mmHg, with a consensus across medical guidelines, is a condition of hypertension.
According to the American College of Cardiology (2017), the various categories of blood pressure are: Normal (less than 120/80 mm Hg); elevated or pre-hypertension (systolic between 120-129 mm Hg and diastolic less than 80 mm Hg); stage 1 (systolic between 130-139 mm Hg and diastolic 80-89 mm Hg); stage 2 (systolic at least 140 mm Hg or diastolic at least 90 mm Hg); hypertensive crisis (systolic over 180 mm Hg and/or diastolic over 120 mm Hg).
There are two types of high blood pressure: Primary Hypertension blood pressure and Secondary Hypertension blood pressure.
Primary Hypertension has no known causes and develops gradually over many years. Generally, adults with a sedentary lifestyle may have primary hypertension.
Secondary hypertension is the type of high blood pressure caused by an underlying medical condition such as kidney problems, fatty liver, thyroid, alcohol abuse, tumour or sleep apnea.
Here are a few studies and stats related to high blood pressure!
- 1 in five 5 adults in India has high blood pressure, according to research presented at the 70th Annual Conference of the Cardiological Society of India (CSI). That means a total to around 80 million people, which is a much bigger number than the entire population of the UK.
- The prevalence of hypertension was 19%. While only 15% of people with hypertension were on treatment and of those, 49% had uncontrolled blood pressure.
- It is estimated that nearly 1.5 billion adults in the world will have hypertension in the decade ahead.
- A recent report says that every eighth Indian is hypertensive.
- Most hypertension patients don’t show symptoms, says NHP report.
- For most people and children 14 years and older, the recommendation is to limit sodium to less than 2,300 milligrams per day.
- Consuming less than 2,300 milligrams of sodium per day can have an additional impact on lowering blood pressure, especially when combined with the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH).
If you are suffering from high blood pressure then it is quite important to pay heed to your lifestyle and diet. Yes, medications are a great way to solve this problem but several changes in the way you live can also help you to bring down your numbers.
Here are some dietary interventions and lifestyle changes you can make to low down your blood pressure.
- Leafy greens
- Skim milk and yoghurt
- Fatty fishes
- Lose extra pounds and watch your waistline
- Physical activeness
- Reduce sodium in your diet
- Cut back on the caffeine
- Limit the alcohol
- Reduce stress
So, take care of your blood pressure and seek the advice of a doctor if you feel uncommon symptoms. Add these changes to your diet and in your lifestyle for effective results.