BLOOD PRESSURE GUIDE: HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE EXPLAINED

Blood Pressure Explained

When it comes to high blood pressure or hypertension there are not many noticeable symptoms. One of the main ways to check for high blood pressure is to have it measured. If you have recently been told you have high blood pressure, or don't know much about how blood pressure works, keep reading.

What is high blood pressure? Causes of High Blood Pressure

In simple words, a blood pressure reading consists of two numbers – the first number is the systolic pressure, and is followed by the diastolic pressure, which is the lower value.

  • Normal blood pressure is below 120/80 mm Hg.
  • Blood pressure between 120-129/80 is elevated blood pressure
  • Blood pressure of 130/80 or above is considered high.

Blood pressure readings between 120/80mmHg and 140/90mmHg could mean you're at risk of developing high blood pressure.

Why is it important to treat High Blood Pressure?

High blood pressure puts a strain on your heart and if left untreated over time, it could damage your body’s organs, which can lead health problems like a heart attack or stroke.

CAUSES OF HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE

While there may be no single cause for high blood pressure, your lifestyle plays an important role in your blood pressure reading. You are at a higher risk if you consume too much salt, don’t have a sufficient intake of fruit and vegetables, do not exercise enough, are obese, have stress, or drink too much alcohol or caffeinated drinks.

BODY WEIGHTCauses of High Blood Pressure

Being overweight can increase the risk of high blood pressure. Losing as little as 10 to 20 pounds can help lower blood pressure and the risk of heart diseases. Reduce your calorie intake by avoiding foods that contain a lot of added sugar like sugar-sweetened drinks, confectionery, cakes and set yourself realistic targets.

AVOID TOO MUCH SALT

Too much salt increases the blood pressure, so it is important to consume as little as possible. When shopping for food, it’s best to check the labels and choose low-salt options wherever you can. The target is to have less than 6g of salt a day. You can also use herbs and spices to flavour your food instead.

CONSUME A MINIMUM OF 5 FRUIT & VEGETABLES

Target eating at least five portions of fruit and vegetables every day. Try to include potassium rich foods as they help balance excess sodium (salt) in the body like bananas, melons, oranges and leafy vegetables.

EXERCISE REGULARLY AND REDUCE STRESSCauses of High Blood Pressure

As little as 30 minutes of moderate exercise every day can keep your heart healthy, reduce stress and can lower your blood pressure. Activities like swimming and cycling are fun ways to keep yourself fit and also keeps your mind clear of stress.

MEASURING YOUR BLOOD PRESSURE AT HOME

Measuring blood pressure regularly at home can be useful in allowing you to monitor your blood pressure accurately over time. It is advised to measure your blood pressure, when your body is relaxed. You can find our range of blood pressure monitors here.

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