High Blood Pressure = Hypertension
If blood pressure is over 160/95 mm Hg it is referred to as high blood pressure = hypertension.
If the blood pressure remains high over a longer period of time, there is a risk of getting damages to the heart and blood vessels.
Commonness of High Blood Pressure
The commonness of high blood pressure is dependant on different factors. The commonness of high blood pressure increases considerably with age and weight. Ca. 20% of all adults have increased blood pressure. About 40% of the population under 65 years dies of high blood pressure and its consequences (heart attack, stroke).
Causes of High Blood Pressure:
- Primary hypertension: The causes of high blood pressure of about 90% of high blood pressure illnesses are unknown. It is presumably external influences such as stress, being overweight and alcohol with a corresponding genetic disposition which lead to high blood pressure.
- Secondary hypertension: High blood pressure caused by other illnesses (e.g. affected kidneys) makes up about 10% of the cases.
Consequences of High Blood Pressure:
Most people with high blood pressure have no symptoms and the high blood pressure is only detected by coincidence. High blood pressure that lasts over a longer period of time can lead to a variety of complications:
- Vessels: Arteriosclerosis develops at a faster rate as a result of high blood pressure.
- Heart: Damages of the left heart ventricle as a result of overstrain caused by high blood pressure. Risk of heart failure or heart attack!
- Eyes: High blood pressure causes damages to the retina.
- Brain: increased risk of getting a stroke.
- Kidneys: Cirrhosis of the kidney with renal failure as a result of high blood pressure.
Treatment of High Blood Pressure
- Pharmacological therapy
- In many cases of high blood pressure, losing excess weight is a priority. After reaching a normal weight, one can also try to reduce medication.
- Avoiding stress by using relaxation techniques.
- Doing regular endurance exercise can decrease high blood pressure.
High Blood Pressure and Nutrition
- A diet is usually a sufficient treatment method for slight hypertension.
- A number of high blood pressure patients have reacted to cooking salt. In these cases, decreasing the consumption of cooking salt can reduce blood pressure.
- A diet rich in potassium can help to decrease blood pressure.
- Alcohol and nicotine can enhance the development of high blood pressure.
Controlling High Blood Pressure the Natural Way [Mass Market Paperback] David Carroll, Wahida S. Karmally
Harvard Medical School Guide to Lowering Your Blood Pressure (Harvard Medical School Guides), Aggie Case, Herbert Benson