Explain The Factors That Affect Blood Flow And Blood Pressure What Is High Blood Pressure?

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What Is High Blood Pressure?

High blood pressure is one of our most common health problems and is constantly increasing in most modern societies. Finding out you have this condition can be very upsetting, especially if you don’t fully understand what it is and the implications for your future health. But when you understand what’s going on in your body, you’ll be able to deal with it more easily and find effective treatment options.

The heart pumps blood throughout the body to supply vital organs and functions with oxygen and other nutrients. Blood pressure is the force that acts on the walls of our blood vessels as blood circulates through the body. Blood pressure readings are always associated with two numbers; higher is called systolic and lower diastolic. Systolic blood pressure is the force of the blood when the heart beats. Diastolic pressure is the pressure at rest between heartbeats. Both numbers are important, but doctors tend to look more closely at systolic pressure as people age and their blood pressure starts to rise.

In a healthy circulatory system, blood flows relatively easily through relaxed, flexible and unrestricted blood vessels. Under these ideal circumstances, blood pressure is usually around 120 systolic compared to 70 diastolic. However, blood pressure will increase whenever there is something that restricts blood flow or makes it difficult for the heart to pump. This can be a response to strenuous activity, for example, when the muscles need more blood. This is completely normal and blood pressure will return to normal when the body rests.

However, there are many other, unhealthy circumstances that can cause blood pressure to rise. Fatty deposits called plaque can build up in the arteries, usually caused by a poor diet. These buildups obstruct blood flow, just as they clog a water hose, and increase pressure and strain on the heart. Another thing that can cause increased heart rate and increased blood pressure is excess weight.

There are many things that can cause your blood pressure to rise, but when the rise becomes persistent above a certain level, you will be diagnosed with high blood pressure or hypertension. High blood pressure is usually considered to start at 140 over 90, although many doctors consider anything above 130/80 a potential risk and call it prehypertension.

So let’s say you have hypertension. What are the risks and how will you lower your blood pressure? The first part of the answer is easy. If left untreated and uncontrolled, hypertension can lead to many serious health problems. This includes heart disease, kidney disease and even eye damage including blindness.

The consequences for the heart and circulation are easy to explain. Constantly high pressure on the blood vessels can lead to arteriosclerosis or hardening of the arteries. This condition will contribute to further pressure on the heart. A combination of hardened and partially blocked arteries can eventually cause a heart attack. Or the plaque can break free inside the artery and cause a blockage elsewhere in the body. The result is often a stroke.

The good news is that high blood pressure is treatable and even easier to prevent. Most experts agree that the vast majority of hypertension cases will respond well to positive lifestyle changes. And if you make such changes early enough, you will prevent high blood pressure.

Armed with the knowledge of what poor quality foods can do to your arteries, you’re more likely to eat healthy foods. Being aware of the extreme strain on your heart from being overweight can help you stay active and fit and watch your weight. Perhaps even more important than your weight is your body mass index (BMI). BMI is a good indicator of the ratio of fat to muscle in your body. A healthy BMI is 25 or less.

It is important to take your blood pressure seriously and keep it under control with a healthy lifestyle. The only other alternative for high blood pressure is the use of powerful drugs. They are usually effective in lowering blood pressure, but at the cost of numerous unpleasant side effects. The choice should be simple. Forewarned is forearmed.

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