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High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)

Hypertension or high blood pressure is a common disorder of blood circulation that may lead to fatal heart attacks, stroke, or even kidney diseases. Statistic shows almost 1/5 of adults in the West are affected by this dreaded disease.

Experts say hypertension could be hereditary. It is a common disease for people in their mid and old age than the young. Hypertension is affecting more men than women. However, women on contraceptive pills are prone to it. Not to mention also, short people and those under stress are very susceptible to it. Smokers should also be aware of this disease because they are likely to have high blood pressure.

Medications can help solve hypertension problem but the cure cannot be found on drugs. Drugs can only sustain what is deemed safe limits but cannot guarantee that there will be no attacks. Dietary practices and physical activity can help prevent or control hypertension. Obese people are more likely to have hypertension than slim bodied people. There are prescribed ideal weight for a particular height and age of a person. Trimming down to an ideal weight will be a big help.

Alcohol is not advised when you are hypertensive because it induces high blood pressure. But doctors advise one shot of red wine after every meal to help gain antioxidants. Taking more is not advisable.

Studies proved that foods low in salt are very helpful. Limit salt intake to 4 g a day or ask physician for better advice. Keeping the taste of your foods as natural as possible is the best diet.

While cutting down salt intake, consume more fruits and vegetables, especially foods rich in potassium such as dried apricots, nuts, and others. Potassium can help lower blood pressure. For those with kidney disorder, avoid taking potassium-rich foods as it can complicate the matter.

Calcium and magnesium are two dietary minerals that show positive effect against high blood pressure. Fruits and vegetables high in soluble fibre also show good sign of lowering blood pressure. Essential fatty acids such as omega 3 fatty acids from oily fish like tuna have also been shown to lower blood pressure. Garlic and moderate alcohol intake (1-2 shots per day) can have the similar effects.

Vegetarians have less incidence of high blood pressure probably due to high fibre content, flushing out toxic cholesterol and fats from the body. Many vegetables contain potassium, calcium, magnesium and vitamin C which can lower blood pressure. Above all, it is important to maintain a healthy diet and lifestyle. Precaution is definitely better than cure.