The international society of hypertension initiated World Hypertension Day in 2005 and has promoted it yearly ever since.
Hypertension–you might know it better as high blood pressure–is called the silent killer because people who have it often don’t know it. And it’s a big deal, because the risk of stroke is four times greater in those with high blood pressure, and the risk of a heart attack is two times greater. Put it this way: as your blood pressure increases above the normal range, so do your chances of dying.
So what to do?
First of all, understand your risk. Then make sure you know what your blood pressure is. Normal range is 120/80 to 140/90. If it’s over 140/90 visit your health care provider.
Next, prevent or reduce hypertension. The biggest causes are lifestyle factors such as physical inactivity, a diet high in processed and fatty foods, and alcohol and tobacco use.
Hypertension is largely preventable and treatable through lifestyle change. The list should sound familiar:
- Lose weight
- Eat foods that nature makes – LOTS of fruits and veggies
- Exercise regularly
- STOP SMOKING
- Drink alcohol sensibly – no more than 2/day for men and 1/day for women
What about salt? The connection between salt and hypertension is a story that’s been told for decades, but, as we’ve written about before, the connection is more complicated than it seems. A better approach? Focus on cooking your own meals and eating lots of whole food–good nutrition and exercise are the best tools you have.
If you’re curious about your cardiovascular health or have questions about lifestyle changes, contact the clinic anytime at 705-444-5331 or firstname.lastname@example.org.