Are you under pressure?

Are you under pressure?

Rising BP

Are you under pressure?

While the current lifestyle maybe a major factor in increasing hypertension, blood pressure can be controled by having a good diet, writes Dr Purshottam Lal.

Blood Pressure is the first step towards manifestation of many diseases including stork, aneurysm, dementia, enlargement of left heart, heart failure, kidney dysfunction, arterial damage, eye blood vessel damage, sexual dysfunction etc.

And the changing needs which has given rise to the ever changing lifestyle has increased the woe of blood pressure variations in the body. Long sitting hours in a monotonous cubical, continuous gazing at the laptop screen, constant peer pressure, frequent corporate tours, horde for promotion and increment and above all the hassles  of maintaining a balance between  family and professional life is giving rush to the blood flow. However, doctors suggest that maintaining a balance in the food intake can control the blood pressure to a greater extent and help in keeping a normal life.       
It is estimated that about 1 in 3 U.S. adults—as estimated 68 million—have high blood pressure, which increases the risk for heart disease and stroke, the leading causes of death in the United States.

Hypertension is an important public health problem in India. Modern epidemic and a silent killer, in fact, hypertension is the most prevalent chronic disease in India. Epiemoiological studies show a steadily increasing trend in hypertension prevalence over the last 50 years converse to findings from developed countries where there has been a significant decline. Over 140 million people are believed to be suffering from high blood pressure in our country and the number is expected to cross the 214 million mark in 2030. A WHO estimate in 2012 suggested 23 per cent men and 22 per cent women older than 25 years had hypertension in India.

High blood pressure, also referred to as hypertension, occurs when blood flows through the arteries at a higher pressure than normal. Increased blood pressure is a high risk condition that causes approximately 51 per cent deaths from stroke and 45 per cent from coronary artery disease in India. It is a major risk factor for cardio vascular disease that killed 2.7 million people in 2004 and will result in the death of over 4 million people by 2030. Hypertension or elevated blood pressure can’t be taken lightly. It can over a period of time, wreck havoc with one’s system. It increased a personal risk of heart disease, stroke, kidney disease and even blindness. The increase in hypertension is related to the rising population-meansystolic blood pressure and is associated with escalating hypertension risk factor like sedentary lifestyle, psychosocial stress, salt and alcohol consumption and obesity. Recent studies show that for every known person with hypertension there are two persons with either undiagnosed hypertension or pre-hypertension. There are various ways to prevent hypertension with change in one’s lifestyle.

Weight management

Excess weight leads to high blood pressure. The overweight body requires extra blood to pass through the vessels, causing a build-up of pressure. This pressure forces the heart to work harder than normal.

Exercise regularly

Daily physical activities not only helps in controlling excess weight but also lowers blood pressure. Regular exercise reduces the blood pressure because it stimulates the release of a chemical in the body called nitric oxide, which helps to keep the blood vessels open for blood flow. Regular exercise also gets the heart pumping, strengthening the cardio vascular system. Daily exercise recommendations can include light walking or more intense such as weight training and aerobics.

Eat healthy

A diet rich in whole grains and low in fat, aids in managing blood pressure. Reducing the intake of saturated fats and avoiding fried foods also maintain the blood pressure rising high. It is advised to read food labels for nutrition information which will aid in forming healthy eating habits.

Reduce salt, alcohol, and smoking

Too much daily intake of sodium is a culprit for high blood pressure. Patient should substitute with species such as garlic and pepper. Alcohol raises blood pressure by reducing the blow of nutrient rich blood to heart. Smoking tobacco products also raises blood pressure by narrowing blood vessel.

Take less pressure

Day-to-day pressure of life either work pressure or family pressure results in hypertension. It is advised to stay cool and relax after work. Talk to the family and discuss things to find a common solution over any issue of conflict.
(The writer is a cardiologist.)

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