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HYPERTENSION

Hypertension is high blood pressure. Blood pressure is the force of blood pushing against the walls of arteries as it flows through them.
Blood pressure which remains consistently high and not just once twice is termed hypertension. Persistent hypertension is one of the risk factors for stroke, myocardial infarction, heart failure and arterial aneurysm, and is a leading cause of chronic kidney failure.

 

 

 

In most cases the cause for high blood pressure is not known but familial heredity factors, stress, kidney pathology and hormonal imbalance are some causes. More than 80% of hypertension is "Essential hypertension" for which no cause can be found. Normal blood pressure is measured in two parameters. One is systolic (upper) and second is diastolic (lower). Systolic tells about the condition of the heart while the diastolic tells about the force that the heart has to work against. 120/80 mm of mercury, is the normal reading. But a lot of doctors consider 140/90 mm of mercury as within normal range in young adults.

SYMPTOMS

1. Majority cases of hypertension are detected accidentally as many are asymptomatic. Drowsiness, confusion, vision disorders, nausea, and vomiting.
2. Headaches especially when in sun or on exertion.
3. Chest pain or tightness.
4. Palpitations.
5. Tingling and numbness, muscle cramps.
6. Nosebleeds.
7. Profuse perspiration.

DO'S AND DON'TS

1. Do not worry or fret even if you are diagnosed as hypertensive as this will increase your blood Pressure. Stop salt altogether for a few days if blood pressure is very high. Later on switch to a healthful diet with less of salt and fat.

2. Take plenty of fresh fruit, vegetables and whole grains rich in calcium, magnesium and potassium.
Learn to recognize and tackle stress. At work, don't accept unrealistic demands, always delegate work and set realistic goals. Learn time management and take regular exercise as activity reduces tension. Meditation & yoga will help you to achieve that. Make sure you get proper sleep. Regular meditation is useful. Take medicines regularly and go for regular checkups.

3. Almonds and walnuts are zero cholesterol and have good quality fats. High - fibre foods, esp. vegetables, fruits, legumes etc. will reduce your blood cholesterol.
Flax seeds are good for the prevention of heart disease, as they are rich in omega-3. Refined carbohydrates from sources like sugar, white bread, noodles and other Maida preparations will increase your triglycerides.
Alcohol is not a recommendation.

4. At least 40 minutes of good physical activity at least five times a week along with healthy eating can keep your heart healthy.  Olive, rice bran, mustard, til and soybean oil in moderation are a good option.
5. Repeated heating of oil is bad for your health as it makes the oil toxic.100 Gms of fish, 4-5 times a week reduces the risk of heart disease because of omega 3 fatty acids. Fish oil capsules also help.

6. Read meat is high in cholesterol content.
7. Consumption of vanaspati and margarine is bad for health as they are rich in Trans fats.Restrict the oil to 3tsps per day.

Consult a doctor if symptoms are severe or if associated symptoms are present.

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