Preventing Hypertension

by Jsantos, March 21, 2013

Preventing Hypertension

Although we normally talk about orthopedic related topics on this section, hypertension is a problem that affects approximately 60 million americans.

Therefore, it makes total sense to include it within the lines of the blog. Chronically elevated levels of arterial blood pressure does not have a established cause. Since, high blood pressure adds to the workload of the heart and arteries, hypertension is a primary risk factor for coronary disease.

When your heart is forced to work harder for a longer period of time, it tends to enlarge to compensate the workload. Contrary to enlarged hearts due to healthy lifestyles and physical activities, hypertension forces our hearts to pass a point where the demands place upon it are very difficult to meet and finally gives up.

An individual may have high blood pessure for years and never know it because often no outward signs or symptoms exist. Eventually, if it remains undiscovered and nothing is done to treat it, artery walls can be damaged, leading to hardening (less elastic) and narrowing (scarring) of arteries and arterioles (a condition known as atherosclerosis). In turn, this condition results in a reduction of blood flow to several organs, including the heart, kidneys and eyes. In addition, the added demands on the heart may cause its left ventricle wall to thicken, thereby decreasing the its efficiency. Collectively, untreated hypertension increases the risk of both stroke and heart disease.

Some tips to help you prevent Hypertension

Since the specific cause of hypertension is generally unknown in almost 90% of cases, the measures recommended to prevent high blood pressure cover a broad spectrum. Considerable research suggests that the following steps can be effective in both preventing and treating high blood


  • Maintain an appropriate bodyweight: Obese individuals are more than twice as likely to have high blood pressure than others. If body fat is too high, even a small decrease in fat level can significantly lower blood pressure.
  • Limit alcohol intake: No more than two drinks a day. Alcohol raises blood pressure, simple. The good thing is that you can avoid this by stop drinking it.
  • Do not smoke: Nicotine has been shown to constrict small blood vessels and raise blood pressure. In addition, smoking increases the risk of heart attack in other ways.
  • Moderate salt consumption in your diet: Although diverse opinions exists regarding the relationship between high blood pressure and salt intake, salt does appear to increase blood pressure levels in sodium-sensitive individuals. (Approximately half of hypertension sufferers are sodium-sensitive.)
  • Consume adequate amounts of calcium, magnesium and potassium: Studies have found that these minerals can have a positive impact on blood pressure.
  • Exercise on a regular basis: Exercise has been found to have several interrelated benefits with regard to blood pressure, including maintenance of a desirable bodyweight, reduction of the risk of heart disease and strengthening of cardiovascular system.

Surgeon’s Advice | Leon Mead MD Orthopedic Doctor | 730 Goodlette Road North, Suite 201  Naples Florida 34102 | Phone: (239) 262-1119


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