ROLL UP YOUR SLEEVES… WHAT IS HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE AND HOW TO PREVENT IT
Did you know one in three young adults have high blood pressure? More than 32% of women! This costs the nation billions annually in direct medical expenses. The sad part is that 20% of people don’t even know they have it!
What is high blood pressure?
Blood pressure is the force that blood puts on the walls of your blood vessels as blood flows through them. This naturally rises and falls throughout your day, but when it’s high, it makes your heart work too hard. Like the pipes in a house, your arteries can fail if they are under too much pressure… your risk of heart disease and stroke increases.
How do you prevent high blood pressure?
Eat right: Fine tune your diet… read nutrition labels, and use herbs and spices instead of salt to flavour your food!
Be active.: It only takes 30 minutes of physical activity a day to lower your blood pressure!
Reduce stress: This has a HUGE impact on your mind and body. Find healthy ways to cope with stress!
Communicate: Write down your concerns in a journal. Talk to your doctor! Ask questions.
Stop tobacco use: Every cigarette you smoke and tobacco you chew raises your blood pressure – as does second hand smoke affect your loved ones’.
Track your numbers: Check your blood pressure often. Know your numbers! Avoid doing things (like drinking coffee) before you get checked. I always make that mistake!
Manage all your health issues: High blood pressure can worsen other conditions.
Take your medication: It only works when you actually take it – every day at the same time.
Know your risks: Know what you can control – your weight, diet, activity level, tobacco and alcohol use – and can’t control – your age, gender, race, and family history.
NOTE: you can have high blood pressure and not know it! You may have heard people call it the silent killer. This is why it’s so important to have your blood pressure checked regularly.
As you probably already know, it’s incredibly easy to get your blood pressure checked, and totally painless. You can have yours checked by your doctor, and many pharmacies have free screenings throughout the year.