Diet and high blood pressure

Have you ever suffered from high blood pressure? And you don’t know what to do with it? You will find useful information about it in the article below!

What actually is blood pressure?

The blood is pumped by the heart in the blood vessel system. The blood exerts pressure on the wall of the blood vessels. This is called blood pressure. Blood pressure is highest when the heart pumps blood into the main artery. The further from the heart, the lower the pressure becomes.

Blood pressure is expressed in two values.

The systolic blood pressure or upper pressure

  • Maximum blood pressure, when the heart muscle contracts and squeezes the blood into the arteries.

The diastolic blood pressure or negative pressure

  • Minimum blood pressure, when the heart muscle is relaxed.

 

Values

Normal blood pressure is referred to as normotension.

  • Normal systolic blood pressure: between 100 and 300 mm Hg
  • Normal diastolic blood pressure: between 60 and 90 mm Hg

High blood pressure is referred to as hypertension.

  • Mild hypertension: 95 to 104 mm Hg diastolic pressure
  • Moderate hypertension: 105 to 114 mm Hg diastolic pressure
  • Severe hypertension: 115 mm Hg diastolic pressure

When blood pressure is too low, it is referred to as hypotension.

Source: Public domain, Wikimedia Commons (PD)

What are the causes of hypertension?

Hypertension is the result of many factors:

Narrowing of the arteries

The smaller the diameter, the greater the pressure for the same volume of blood. Causes of narrowed arteries include:

  • Arteriosclerosis: Due to deposition of cholesterol and calcium, the internal diameter decreases.
  • Edema formation: Fluid accumulation, which also narrows the arteries.
  • Smoking: Nicotine in particular is a vasoconstrictor, the tar is carcinogenic.
  • Alcohol abuse: vasoconstrictor.

 

Decreased elasticity of the arteries

The more elastic they are, the better they expand and the pressure will then be less. Less resilient arteries are less able to cope with the increase in pressure. Causes of less resilient arteries include:

  • Age
  • Arteriosclerosis

 

Increased functioning of the heart due to overload

  • Psychological factors such as emotions, stress conditions and overtiredness.
  • Too little exercise
  • Obesity

 

Hormonal disorders

For example, excessive thyroid function. Metabolism increased, which increases oxygen consumption and blood flow.

Pregnancy

Extra efforts are required of the body and there is a greater need for blood due to the blood flow through the placenta and for the baby’s circulation.
Heredity

Consequences of hypertension

Cardiovascular disorders = cardiovascular disorders

  • Cardiac decompensation or cardiac weakness : Increased blood pressure causes the heart muscle to work harder. At a certain point, the heart muscle can no longer process all the blood. The heart does not have enough strength to pump the necessary amount of blood through the body.
  • Angina pectoris or tightness of the heart : The coronary arteries are narrowed, which actually supply the heart muscle with oxygen, which gives a tight feeling in the chest area.
  • Myocardial infarction : A branch of the coronary arteries is blocked by a blood clot. This stops the blood flow to part of the heart and this part dies.

 

Disorders of the cerebral blood vessels = cerebrovascular disorders

Increased blood pressure increases the risk of arteriosclerosis in the arteries and capillaries of the brain, which can cause cerebral hemorrhage.

Disorders of the kidneys and eyes

Here the blood vessels thin into very thin capillaries. This makes them extra sensitive to hypertension.

What can you do against high blood pressure or hypertension?

An adapted diet

  • Treatment of obesity.
  • Moderate alcohol.
  • Lowering cholesterol and fat levels.
  • Mineral composition of the diet.

 

Healthy lifestyle

  • Avoiding stress, fatigue and excessive emotions.
  • More exercise.
  • Do not smoke.

 

Regular monitoring of blood pressure

If you measure your blood pressure once, this says nothing about your blood pressure. At least three measurements should be taken three times a day.

Drug treatment

Antihypertensive medicines are not always as effective as one would like. Some blood pressure lowering medicines can have negative side effects on the body. For example, a cholesterol-raising effect.

Remark!

It is important not to add too much salt to food for blood pressure. Some people think that sea salt or coarse iodine-enriched salt are healthier, but this is not the case. Because these salts contain as much sodium as regular salts.

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