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HEALTH

Don’t Let Hypertension Be a Silent Killer

On World Hypertension Day, this is an attempt to clarify most of the queries people have about hypertension. Prevention is better than cure. One may be suffering from the same but ignorance of symptoms and condition can lead to a serious health issue to deal with.

What is hypertension and who could be affected by hypertension?

Hypertension (HTN or HT), also known as high blood pressure (HBP), is a long-term medical condition in which the blood pressure in the arteries is persistently elevated. A condition in which the force of the blood against the artery walls is too high. High blood pressure is a “silent killer”. You may not feel that anything is wrong, but high blood pressure could be quietly causing damage that can threaten your health.

Almost all ages of individuals can be affected with hypertension ranging from children to young adults to old age group. However a number of factors and variables can put you at greater risk for developing hypertension like Family history, age, gender, diabetes mellitus, kidney disease, obesity, alcohol consumption, smoking, physical inactivity, unhealthy diet, stress.

How to check if you are suffering from hypertension?

High blood pressure often has no symptoms. Few inconclusively related symptoms may be

  • Head Ache
  • Nose Bleeds
  • Blurring of Vision
  • Shortness of Breath
  • Dizziness
  • Chest Heaviness
  • Facial Flushing

What are the 10 best food to lower your blood pressure?

 

  • Skimmed milk and  Yogurt
  • Berries
  • Leafy Greens/ garlic
  • Oatmeal
  • Bananas
  • Pomegranate
  • Flaxseed
  • Pistachios
  • Dark Chocolate
  • Red Beets
  • Olive Oil

What are the 10 best drinks for hypertension?

  • Green Tea
  • Hibiscus Tea
  • Skimmed Milk
  • Water
  • Beetroot Juice
  • Watermelon Juice
  • Cranberry Juice
  • Pomegranate Juice
  • Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Red Wine (if you don’t drink, there’s no need to start. you can always go nonalcoholic)

Do’s of Hypertension

  • Add less salt to your food
  • Eat variety of fruits and vegetables
  • Ensure adequate sleep (atleast 8hrs)
  • Regular exercise & meditation
  • Weight reduction as per BMI
  • Know your numbers
  • Don’ts of Hypertension
  • Excessive alcohol consumption
  • Smoking
  • Sedentary life style
  • Unhealthy diet
  • Preserved food
  • Self-medication or noncompliance with medications advised  for hypertension

Can hypertension be cured for good?

In most cases of ‘essential’ hypertension (which means high blood pressure that develops from aging and genetics without any other underlying medical cause), once the condition is diagnosed it is lifelong and cannot be cured but the blood pressure can be maintained within the normal range only with medications. In case of secondary hypertension (caused by another medical condition), treatment of the underlying medical illness can cure the hypertension.

When is medication mandatory in hypertension?

  • In case of hypertensive emergencies.
  • If your BP is more than 140/90 on two or more occasions
  • What are safe levels of blood pressure at different age?
  • Age < 60 years: < 140/90
  • Age > 60 years: <150/90

What are the mistakes/blunders that people do out of ignorance in hypertension?

  • Wait for symptoms (underestimate the silent killer)
  • Counting too much on youth
  • Ignore pre-hypertension (stage before hypertension, now called elevated hypertension -bp readings 120-129/ <80mmhg)
  • Misunderstanding family history
  • Stop medications

 

 

 

Drop your query in the comment section, we would love to help you stay healthy.

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Dr. Sushant Patil
Dr. Sushant Patil is a Consulting Cardiologist at Nanavati Super Specialty Hospital, Mumbai.
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