Nearly every time you visit the doctor, and definitely when you go for a check-up, he will take and record your blood pressure. The same goes for hospital visits before, during and as a follow up to a stay in hospital or an operation. And if you are sent by your doctor to visit a specialist of any kind, the same often applies.
This is because your blood pressure measurement is an important indicator of your health, and also because, or hypertension, is a silent condition, often with no (or almost un-noticeable) symptoms, which can go undetected for many years, creating havoc in your body, before serious symptoms arise.
Blood pressure is the force of blood against the walls of the arteries as the heart pumps. Blood pressure is recorded as two numbers—the systolic pressure (as the heart beats) over the diastolic pressure (as the heart relaxes between beats). The measurement is written one above or before the other, with the systolic number on top and the diastolic number on the bottom. For example, a blood pressure measurement of 120/80 mmHg (millimetres of mercury) is expressed verbally as "120 over 80," or as “12 over 82”.
Normal blood pressure is less than 120 mmHg systolic and less than 80 mmHg diastolic expressed either as 120 over 80 or 12 over 80.
However, This website is mainly interested in prevention, so we will begin by giving you some advice to follow in order to prevent hypertension arising in the first place
Like many of the conditions described on this web site, you can take steps to prevent hypertension by adopting a healthy lifestyle. As with many other diseases which become more common as we age, these steps include maintaining a healthy weight, through being physically active and eating healthily. This means following a diet which is rich in fruits, vegetables, nuts, low fat dairy products healthy eating plan, that emphasizes fruits, vegetables, and low fat dairy foods. It is always best to eat non-processed foods as much as possible as these often have a high saturation of salt, fat and sodium. It is wise to use very little salt in cooking and not to add salt to your food before eating it. Limiting your consumption of alcoholic beverages is also extremely important.
The Mediterranean Style or DASH Diet
This Video explains how adopting a Mediterranean style of eating can lower your blood pressure and have an overall effect on your health
Many studies confirm that a Mediterranean style of eating—one that is rich in fruits, vegetables, olives, and whole grains—is not only healthful for the heart, but can also prevent many age-related diseases. Eating like they do in Greece, Italy, France, and other Mediterranean countries can be good for your long-term health and can guard against high blood pressure and heart disease.
Life in rural areas of the Mediterranean includes an active lifestyle and eating plenty of vegetables and fruits, which can help to keep you healthy. The Mediterranean diet also includes sources of monounsaturated fats, like olive oil, nuts, and fatty fish, which are rich in healthy omega-3 fats. These monounsaturated fats can contribute to lowering blood pressure and preventing heart disease, as well as keeping your weight down and increasing your overall well-being.
Click on the links below to learn more about how to develop the best practices for preventing and controlling high blood pressure.