Hypertension is another name for high blood pressure. it can lead to severe health complications and increase the risk of heart disease, stroke, and sometimes death. blood pressure is the force that a person’s blood exerts against the walls of their blood vessels. this pressure depends on the resistance of the blood vessels and how hard the heart has to work. almost half of all adults in the United States have high blood pressure, but many are not aware of this fact. hypertension is a primary risk factor for cardiovascular disease, including stroke, heart attack, heart failure, and aneurysm. Keeping blood pressure under control is vital for preserving health and reducing the risk of these dangerous conditions.
Lifestyle adjustments are the standard, first-line treatment for hypertension. We outline some recommendations here:
- Regular physical exercise
- People can measure blood pressure using a sphygmomanometer.
- Current guidelines recommend that all people, including those with hypertension, engage in at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity, aerobic exercise every week, or 75 minutes a week of high-intensity exercise.
- People should exercise on at least 5 days of the week.
- Examples of suitable activities are walking, jogging, cycling, or swimming.
Avoiding or learning to manage stress can help a person control blood pressure. Meditation, warm baths, yoga, and simply going on long walks are relaxation techniques that can help relieve stress.
People should avoid consuming alcohol, recreational drugs, tobacco, and junk food to cope with stress, as these can contribute to elevated blood pressure and the complications of hypertension.Smoking can increase blood pressure. avoiding or quitting smoking reduces the risk of hypertension, serious heart conditions, and other health issues.
- People can prevent high blood pressure by following a heart-healthy diet.
- Reducing salt intake
- People’s average salt intake is between 9 grams (g) and 12 g per day in most countries around the world.
- The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends reducing intake to under 5 g a day to help decrease the risk of hypertension and related health problems.
- Lowering salt intake can benefit people both with and without hypertension.
- Moderating alcohol consumption
- Moderate to excessive alcohol consumption can increase blood pressure.
- The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends a maximum of two alcoholic drinks a day for men, and one for women.
Excess body weight can contribute to hypertension. A fall in blood pressure usually follows weight loss, as the heart does not have to work so hard to pump blood around the body. A balanced diet with a calorie intake that matches the individual’s size, sex, and activity level will help.
- Stress can increase the risk of high blood pressure.
- The cause of hypertension is often not known. In many cases, it is the result of an underlying condition.
- Doctors call high blood pressure that is not due to another condition or disease primary or essential hypertension.
- If an underlying condition is a cause of increased blood pressure, doctors call this secondary hypertension.