The heart is a muscular organ. It is cone shaped. It is larger in men than in woman. The heart has many functions,one of which includes generating blood pressure. It is the pressure generated through the pumping action of the heart that carries blood throughout the body. This pressure is the blood pressure. Blood pressure is simply defined as the force exerted by circulating blood on nearby blood vessels.
Two figures make up the blood pressure. The systolic blood pressure which is the value above and the diastolic pressure which is the value below. The normal systolic blood pressure is about 120mmHg while a normal diastolic blood pressure is about 80mmHg. Any value that exceeds this is considered abnormal.
Although many factors can increase the risk of hypertension including genetics,race,diet (large amount of sodium as in table salt; cholesterol and saturated fats in the diet), persistent stress, obesity, gender, aging, some medical conditions to mention but a few. We can also adopt healthy lifestyle changes to reduce our risk even if the risk is high as unmodifiable as in genetics. Some healthy lifestyle changes include:
Restricting sodium intake: Salt is a necessity as our food is tasteless without it so it is almost impossible to completely eradicate it from our diet. Salt is found in bacon and sardines as they help in preservation and they prolong the shelf life of these foods. Salt is also found in almost all processed foods. We should always limit our daily salt intake as this has many other health benefits.
Consuming less saturated fats: Saturated fats such as those found in margarine,butter, groundnut oil and deep fried foods will do us more harm than good. Apart from increasing our risk of having hypertension,it also increases the chances of other conditions such as obesity, artherosclerosis, to mention but a few.
Avoiding a sedentary lifestyle, that is, being physically active by exercising regularly, taking the stairs instead of using the elevator and so on
Maintaining a healthy weight
Managing and medical conditions we have and adhering to its therapy.
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