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How You Can Prevent Hypertension

August 10, 2010 by  

How You Can Prevent Hypertension

High blood pressure—or hypertension—is one of the most prevalent health issues affecting Americans’ quality of life.

The blood’s pressure is a measurement reading of the amount of force the heart generates while pumping blood through the arteries. There are two numbers involved in the reading of blood pressure, systolic and diastolic.

The systolic number is listed first and it represents the amount of force expended by the heart as it fills the blood vessels. Diastolic pressure, on the other hand, is a quantification of the resistance to that force. When taken together, the systolic and diastolic numbers provide an indication of how successful your heart is at getting the blood to the tissues in your body.

Hypertension is indicated when the blood pressure reading is consistently above 140/90 mm Hg (milligrams of mercury). A blood pressure of 120/80 mm Hg is considered to be a normal blood pressure reading

Hypertension is an “excess” state to be in. It is unhealthy and stresses the flow of blood to important organs such as the brain, heart and kidneys. When left untreated, hypertension leaves the body in an excessive state of undue stress and can cause stroke, heart attack, arterial aneurysm, hardening of the arteries or kidney failure. All of these conditions are potentially life threatening.

The scariest thing about hypertension is that it can kill without showing initial signs of being present. In fact, it has been described as “the silent killer,” especially since its symptoms include headache, blurry vision and dizziness. But these are general symptoms and not specific only to high blood pressure, which is why it is often detected too late. And when hypertension is present with other conditions, such as obesity and diabetes, it is nearly impossible to treat.

Western bio-medicine has developed some fine drugs for treating hypertension. These include diuretics, angiotensin converting enzymes, angiotensin receptor blockers, alpha blockers, beta blockers, calcium channel blockers and vasodilators. These pharmaceuticals respectively increase the elimination of sodium, inhibit the hormones that cause blood pressure to rise, alter the involuntary nervous system to force a decrease in pressure, reduce blood vessel constriction and dilate arteries to decrease overall pressure.

The problem with prescription medications is they are often used too late, more than one are generally used in combination, they must be taken for the remainder of one’s life and are only prescribed “after the fact.” The best way to avoid the health risks of hypertension is to prevent it from occurring in the first place.

High blood pressure does have a genetic component so people whose parents have it are more likely to get it. Men are also more likely to develop it at an earlier age than women. And blacks are more likely candidates than are Caucasians to develop it.

However, lifestyle choices play a major role in the development of hypertension over the course of one’s life. This means that we have the ability to both cause and prevent this condition. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Obese and overweight people are at a higher risk. It has been repeatedly shown that losing weight can lower your blood pressure by about 5 mm Hg per 10 pounds of weight loss.
  • High sodium intake puts you at risk. Your kidneys simply can’t process excessive salt consumption. Reduce your salt and your blood pressure will also reduce.
  • Alcohol is another villain in the hypertension equation. It has been shown that consuming more than three drinks per day will increase your pressure. If this is your case, reduce your consumption and the pressure will also reduce.
  • Smokers place themselves at risk every time they inhale a cancer stick. Smoking temporarily elevates blood pressure by 5 mm Hg to 10 mm Hg for about a half-hour. If you smoke a pack a day, and already have high blood pressure, you are exponentially increasing your risk of death.
  • Exercising is one of the best options for curing this disease. Lack of exercise increases not only your risk of hypertension, but also of developing obesity and heart disease. So exercise, shed some weight, release some endorphins and reduce that blood pressure.

Prevention is the best medicine. Take control and live a happy, healthy life.

Dr. Mark Wiley

Dr. Mark Wiley

is an internationally renowned mind-body health practitioner, author, motivational speaker and teacher. He holds doctorates in both Oriental and alternative medicine, has done research in eight countries and has developed a model of health and wellness grounded in a self-directed, self-cure approach. The Wiley Method provides a revolutionary way of providing recovery and prevention of chronic pain, illness and disease. Grab your FREE COPY of Dr. Mark Wiley's "The 3 Secrets to Optimal Health" HERE.

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  • Carole Jacoby

    Potassium deficiency is the cause of high blood pressure but by the time it shows low on the charts, either a stroke or heart attack will most likely occur. Intake of potassium should bring the blood pressure down. Minerals such as potassium, magnesium, sodium are critical to keeping the heart working as it should. Reading the blood pressure medicine warnings, they ususally indicate the potassium in the meds does not replace what you are currently taking.

  • JCO


  • DrKete

    Oh for crying out loud! “…developed some fine drugs…” Nonsense! If all the drugs that treat high blood pressure, heart disease, etc actually worked we would be seeing drops in the numbers of cases of these diseases. They recently revised the normal limits for blood pressure down, as well. Sounds like that is a way to sell even more drugs, to me. Measuring blood pressure is an approximation of understanding a body system. I think they need to do more research about how it applies to a living system before throwing drugs at the problem. Saying the drugs don’t work because they are used too late is an interesting theory but it is certainly guaranteed to sell more poison. If the drugs worked as postulated, then they would work no matter how ‘late’ they are used.

    • Vippy

      I have to agree wholeheartedly with your comment. I had a panic attack, came out of nowhere, simulates a heart attack was treated for such. Then the doc put me on Metropolol, a blood pressure medication,
      which did absolutely nothing. I bought a monitor and measured and noticed it goes up and down within minutes. So I figured if I relax and breath in deep and out for a couple of minutes the blood pressure goes down and it did. Then I got myself off the Metropolol. I asked the doctor why it is not really helping any so he stated it only quits it from spiking it. Who needs that?

    • Wendy J

      Would you please tell what kind of Doctorate you hold.

      • drmarc

        Very good question, Wendy!

  • Raggs

    On an november morning the first day of modern gun deer season, I got up at 4:30 am. I was in deer camp and my daughter was there with me.
    Around 5:00 am I started my 4-wheeler and after about ten minutes I was off to my tree stand.
    I made it to within 100 yards of my stand and then I had to walk the rest of the way. I walked to my stand and climbed it and sat down around 5:45 am… About a minute or so after being in the stand my heart started racing, it felt like it was going to beat out of my chest… I got very very dizzy and after about a minute I found myself gasping for air… The world was spinning in circles and there was no way I would ever be able to climb down my deer stand…
    My thoughts… This is it!!! I was going to die in my deer stand..
    My heart was beating so rapidly you could not count the beats, I could not breath and I was dizzy to the point I could not do anything but sit there.

    I prayed for several minutes… finally after what seemed a lifetime my heart beats decreased to the point I was able to see straight.
    I was still having very difficult time breathing, however I said to myself that I had better at least try to get down and go back to deer camp and have my daughter drive my to a hospital.

    So I did just that… By the time I got to the hospital my heart rate was still well over 220 BPM.. I dont remeber exactly but my BP was 198 over 130… This was about an hour after I had the problem in the deer stand. I was put on meds to control this.

    About two years later it happened again, luckly I’m still around.

  • George

    Contrary to standard medical practice, Sodium is not a cause of Hypertension. In fact too much loss of Sodium can lead to irregular heartbeat and other heart problems. The drugs used to reduce Sodium and other ’causes’ of Hypertension are dangerous. They can have side effects worse than the Hypertension itself. There are alternative natural herbs, etc. that are safer and more effective.
    Obesity, smoking, STRESS and lack of moderate exercise do contribute to Hypertension.

  • Dr. Dorothy Adams

    I certainly agree with the bloggers. There has been entirely too much hype for the pharmaceuticals, which all carry significant side effects. Salt is essential, because sodium, potassium, and calcium are necessary for nerve impulse conduction. The food industries and pharmaceutical companies are in business to make money, therefore the revision of the “normal” numbers for blood pressure, and constant manipulation of our food, including the insistance that cholesterol must be lowered below 200, which is complete poppycock. Cholesterol is an essential component of your cell membranes. It only sticks to platelets and other things that have stuck to an injury of the intima of the blood vessel…and you do become hypertensive if you have significant numbers of blockages. However, if your cholesterol dips below what your body has established as its lower limit, you are more, not less, prone to heart attacks…Our current treatment of hypertension is flawed. Treat the cause, not the symptoms, and read carefully the side effects of drugs you prescribe.

  • s c

    I’d appreciate it if MDs would climb down off their pedestals and get to the heart of the matter. Divide what we need to know into two (or three) sections.
    One part should deal with healthy people who aren’t limited by joint problems that prevent them from walking and exercising. The second part should be specifically for those who are limited via joint problems. A third part should be considered for those who have metabolic problems.
    I am proud to be outspoken on health issues, especially when it’s obvious that most American MDs are in love with easy money. If your patient isn’t #1 on your ‘list,’ then do America a favor and recycle yourself through medical school until you can find your niche in life.

  • John Hasse

    Nice to see most of the ‘readers’ are competent. too bad the ‘writer’ isn’t. A large part of the problem is trace mineral deficiency, due to the fact that we eat NaCl rather than real ‘salt’ as it is in nature. “Hypertension” can also be caused by thick blood, and the best approach for that is NOT to take rat poison.

  • coal miner

    Attention, · Cached page

  • Capel

    At 66 yrs, 70 lbs overweight, my Dr was giving me increasing doses of B/P meds to keep my pressure down. I decided to do something about it and before starting personal training had my Dr. do a stress test. Was not even getting enough blood to my heart(EKG) to do a stress test. To shorten the story – after almost 4 years of 3 hours a week personal training, weaning off the B/P meds, minimal changes in diet, bio identical hormones & natural thyroid replacement (Endochronologist) using Celtic sea salt, pomegranate juice, I have lost 45 lbs, regained my core strength etc. and B/P averages 110/70, pulse avg. 60. I am now 70, pumping iron & jogging, still losing.

    • bronish

      I found your comment quite interesting. Good for you! Let me share with you my situation…
      For whatever reason…I have high blood pressure. I refuse to get on meds, however.
      This is the mystery, tho. Since age 14, I have exercised regularly…and vigorously, too. I also dance. Over the years, I have learned about nutrition…and applied what I have learned.
      My diet is healthy today…I eat plenty of fresh food…lots of E.V.olive oil..spices…and I am drinking plenty of good water…plus, every night, I have a “cocktail” of hot water with apple cider vinegar,honey and fresh lemon.
      Also, I am at my ideal weight…I am strong, healthy and slim…not skinny…I have never smoked, I don’t drink or do any sort of drugs…well except an occasional Excedrin if I get a headache that’s bad enough to warrant taking one.
      So, why do I have high blood pressure? I am now 55 years old…and I tell folks I am the new 35! LOL! But, I do have the high blood pressure…why is that?

  • Gaga Man

    It seems many people have panic attacks. I had one too, where my heart raced at 100bpm minium for two weeks even when at total rest.

    My normal heart rate is 69bpm.

    My doctor claimed that even at 100bpm was normal! Not compared to my base rate for as long as I can remember.

    I think stress had to do with it. My father had died a couple of months ago and it occurred at 4am while sleeping. I got up and knew something was wrong. I tried to walk it off but it didn’t work.

    That’s when I realized I’m not a young buck anymore.

  • george

    all of the above sounds great but the proof is in pudding! minerals,vit c and enzymes are a key of the best things around is APPLE CIDER VINEGAR from the health food store. just a tablespoon in the am(i take it in grn tea) and a tablespoon before you go to bed.(drink a lot of water with it)as far as salt goes,we stop using any salt about 35 yrs ago.for 2months it was horrible! then we relized the natural taste of the different foods that we had never tasted because the salt always masked the REAL TASTE.after much research we learned that nobody ever needs to put salt on food or cook with it.yes, our body does need it and our body does get it on its own. you see every vegetable gets natural salt from the ground it is grown on, even organicly grown. all meat and fowl and fish also contains or is processed with salt…the amounts you consume are all your body needs.canned food is something to stay away from,so is processed pop in the microwave and fast foods are like posisen to your body…another great product that everyone needs to learn about and take it religiously is CARDIO CHELATE. it is arterial formula with runs thru the arteries and veins with a powerful
    chelating capability. this means it cleans your arteries and veins…taking with it any heavy metal in your system..widening your blood vessels..i just to have swollen ankles and painful legs until i started on it and i wont be without it or my has brought my diabetes down below 100(i also add BITTER MELON AND CINNAMIN for diabetes)and my pressure is running 117/72 and i am 64 yrs old and overweight….i have lost weight on these products and lifestyle but it is slow
    because if it is slow coming off it stays off…hope this info will help someone.

  • http://goggle jimradford

    I can tell you all that smoking does make you hard to breath,and so does drinking to,and not watching your blood preasher is bad allso, but in my case,i was told to quit both and i did,iam liveing better now but still have copd,and bad nerves to so therewas alot of things that caused my problems,but going up and down stairs when all of this is going on does not make it any easer on me, but being told that the sack that goes around your heart getting inflamed is not good either, and haveing to use a breathing machine with albuterol sulfate helps to and so does the inhaler that i use when on the move, so for all the people out there that thainking is ok, get a grip on your health befor it is to late for you.

  • http://earthlink Butterfly

    I need to hear from others who have experienced and dealt with my type of veinous problems: I am 74 yr old female. The veins in my thighs, legs, ankles and feet (all the way to the end of my toes), are bulging extremely or ex-extremely bad. Some of the bulges look like I could pop them open accidentally with a hangnail. One bulge just above one ankle did harden and form a scab which later fell off. The color of the bulged veins is very dark purple and very, very close to the thin skin covering them. At times I feel a prick, like someone just jabbed me with a needle, and then I notice a new vein shortly thereafter. My legs and ankles/feet swell badly on a daily basis and actually never return to what you would consider normal. My blood pressure is at 130/80 and pulse at 72. I have been taking Warfarin (Coumadin) 4.0 mg and Hydrochlorothiazide l2.5 mg daily for 5 yrs… the doctor recently increased the Warfarin to 5.0 mg daily. I have been diagnosed with Atrial Fibrillation.
    Is there anyone out there who has my problems, who has been able to turn things around and be rid of the obvious circulation problems???

    • Gaga Man

      IT seems you need another doctor. Maybe you should be taking a betablocker and cut the coumadin out?

      But I am not your doctor and don’t know your medical history or lifestyle. And I am not a doctor but experienced caretaker.

      All medication have side effects. You may have to experiment here.

  • Lenny Clinkingbeard

    remember to always read the side effects of blood pressure medications before taking it…

    My very own web page


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