Archive for the ‘Lower Blood Pressure’ Category.
Blood pressure should be checked every two years after the age of 21, annual checks after age 50, more frequent checks if you have risk factors. It is easiest to treat high blood pressure if you catch the gradual increase early on. If you have a family history of heart disease or stroke, all the more reason to pay attention.
Home Monitoring Blood Pressure
If you are diagnosed with high blood pressure, it is wise to monitor your blood pressure at home, as well as your doctor’s office. Combining your readings with your doctor’s will provide a better measure of your high blood pressure and treatment to control it.
Also, home monitoring will rule out if you suffer from “white coat hypertension”. About 30% of individuals diagnosed with hypertension, have “white coat hypertension”. In other words, their blood pressure is elevated due to increased anxiety when visiting the doctor. The only way to know the effects on your blood pressure is to monitor it regularly. For the most accurate results, monitor your blood pressure at the same time every day.
DO NOT substitute home monitoring in place of regular MD checkups. Your MD appointments are very important, especially if your high blood pressure is being treated with medication.
Continue reading ‘How to Find the Right Blood Pressure Monitor’ »
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 65 million Americans have high blood pressure with approximately 74 percent taking medication to treat high blood pressure.
Research presented at the 61st American College of Cardiology’s Annual Scientific Session found internet-based telemedicine to lead to more effective medication prescriptions, improved blood pressure control, and a reduction in cardiovascular risk when compared to traditional, periodic office visits.
Telemedicine to monitor blood pressure refers to patients reporting blood pressure readings more frequently via web-based platforms. This led to more efficient and timely treatment plan adjustments if needed from their health care team.
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Do you need to worry about how much salt you consume in your diet? It has been argued that only those who are “salt sensitive” need to be concerned about decreasing sodium/salt intake to lower blood pressure.
A study published online in Circulation researched how a high sodium diet may lead to hypertension. The study followed over 5000 participants from the Dutch PREVEND study for close to six and a half years. All participants did not have high blood pressure when the study began.
Researchers found high sodium intake to increase serum uric acid and urine albumin excretion. Increases in serum uric acid and urine albumin are two markers of endothelial dysfunction. The endothelium is the inner lining of blood vessels and a dysfunction is an imbalance of the substances that act on the endothelium leading to vasodilation and vasoconstriction.
As serum uric acid secretion increases, risk of developing hypertension increases. Researches found the same to occur as urinary albumin levels increased. The increased risk of hypertension with increased levels of sodium intake was only seen in participants with markers of endothelial dysfunction.
Studies have shown that consuming high levels of sodium for short periods of time to be associated with endothelial dysfunction. Researchers believe that repeat incidences of high sodium intake in the long term may explain rises in blood pressure connected to high sodium diets.
Continue reading ‘Do you need to cut back on salt to lower blood pressure?’ »
Typically cranberry juice is thought of as a home health remedy to treat urinary tract infections (UTI’s). Some recent research indicates cranberry juice may also promote lower blood pressure levels.
Let me begin by stating these study results are preliminary. More research needs to be conducted. The study, funded by Ocean Spray Cranberries, was published as an abstract and the results have not yet been peer-reviewed and published in a journal. Results were reported at a meeting of the American Heart Association in Washington, DC.
Placebo Controlled Study
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According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), one in every three adults in the United States have hypertension (high blood pressure), but only about 50% of those with hypertension have it under control.
A study published April 2012 in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found folic acid intake to impact the development of hypertension.
Study participants included 4400 individuals between the ages of 18 – 30 years-old without high blood pressure. Over the following twenty years participant blood pressure was evaluated six times. Participants also completed three dietary history questionnaires. One questionnaire was completed at the start of the study, a second during the study, and the third and final dietary questionnaire at the study conclusion (20 years).
During the 20 year period, 989 individuals developed hypertension. Individuals consuming diets with the highest folate levels were 52% less likely to develop high blood pressure compared to those with the lowest folic acid intake.
Serum folate measurements during the study confirmed the correlation between folic acid and high blood pressure development.
Some food sources of folate include:
Continue reading ‘Decrease Hypertension Risk by Increasing Folic Acid’ »
If you keep heart healthy foods on hand and easily accessible you will be much more likely to see success in your efforts to lower cholesterol and blood pressure. If you keep unhealthy foods within reach you will make it much harder to achieve your heart health goals. Don’t rely on will power! Stock you kitchen for success. Here are some essentials to keep on hand:
Whole grains, such as barley, oats, rice, buckwheat, and quinoa, are rich in fiber, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. These nutrient dense grains promote a healthy heart.
Continue reading ‘How to Stock a Heart Healthy Kitchen’ »
Waist circumference has a direct relationship to high blood pressure and lipid (cholesterol) levels.
A study published in the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine found the greater the Waist-to-Height Ratio the worse the lipid profile and hypertension in adolescents.
This particular study evaluated 4,104 ninth-grade students between the ages of 14 and 15 years-old during the 2009 – 2012 school year. Body mass index was used to classify waist measurements.
The greater the waist-to-height ratio, the greater the risk for poor lipid profiles and high blood pressure compared to those with normal body mass indexes and waist-to-height ratios.
Continue reading ‘Lower Blood Pressure by Trimming Your Waistline’ »
By selecting whole grains you consume more nutrient dense foods that provide higher fiber content . . . all of which equals a heart healthy choice. Whole grain products contain all layers of the whole grain – the bran, the germ, and the endosperm. When it comes to selecting whole grains, you have many more options than just being sure to grab 100% whole wheat bread when grocery shopping. There are many whole grain varieties available to you.
Oats almost never having the bran or germ removed during processing. This means when you read a food label and see oats or oat flour listed as an ingredient, it’s safe to know this is a whole grain ingredient. Oatmeal has been linked to lower cholesterol levels.
Continue reading ‘Heart Health: Are you selecting whole grains?’ »
You don’t have to begin a drastic diet in order to achieve your heart health goals. Big results can be achieved by improving your daily habits one step at a time.
Here are 5 steps you can implement now for a healthy heart:
Step 1 – Add fruits and vegetables to your daily diet
That’s right, I’m not telling you to eliminate a food, but to add foods. Fruits and vegetables are essential. Add a fruit and/or vegetable to every meal or snack to boost your intake of this necessary food group. It’s estimated that our intake of vegetables is usually only 59% of what it should be and fruit only 42%.
Step 2 – Switch processed grains for whole grains
Continue reading ‘5 Steps to Achieve a Healthy Heart’ »
Are you even familiar with the B vitamin choline? There is a good chance you are not. The Institute of Medicine didn’t even establish a dietary reference intake for this nutrient until 1998.
Choline, like magnesium, plays a role in just about every bodily system. Two compounds are derived from choline – acetylcholine and lecithin. Acetylcholine is a neurotransmitter for the peripheral and central nervous systems. Acetylcholine may protect again certain age-related dementias. Lecithin is a more generic term encompassing yellowish-brown fat tissue.
The body can produce choline in small amounts, but not in large enough quantities to support good health. You must consume choline from dietary sources. Choline can be found in many foods, such as:
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