One of the worst things about high blood pressure is that it’s possible to have it without knowing it. You may not have any early or obvious symptoms, so it is imperative for everyone, regardless of age, to make sure you get your blood pressure taken on a regular basis. As with most health disorders, prevention is definitely the best medicine, and many common causes of high blood pressure can be controlled or avoided altogether.
Smoking and High Blood Pressure
High blood pressure can be caused by many things, and smoking ranks right up there as a leading and very preventable cause. And, high blood pressure is just one of the conditions that can be caused by smoking. Regular smoking hardens the arteries and creates dangerous blockages, which can cause or worsen high blood pressure. The more you smoke, the more you are at risk for both high blood pressure as well as other dangerous cardiac conditions. The fact is, that smoking to any degree at all, and even exposure to second hand smoke, can increase your risk of hypertension. While it’s not always easy to quit smoking, it’s well worth the effort, especially if you already suffer from high blood pressure. And, positive health changes occur in your body, starting the very first hour after quitting.
Alcohol and High Blood Pressure
If you consume too much alcohol, then you are almost certain to have at least episodes of higher blood pressure, if not chronic high blood pressure. Alcohol consumption is tricky when it comes to your health, because many experts now believe that light to moderate drinking may be good for your heart. It’s clear, however, that regularly consuming more than two drinks per day of any alcoholic beverage poses more risks than benefits to your health. For people who have trouble controlling their alcohol consumption, it’s preferable for them to stay away from it than to overindulge. Alcohol, then, may be beneficial in small doses, but heavy drinking raises your blood pressure, as well as the other risks it poses to your health. If you are a recovering addict, or don’t normally drink, staying away from alcohol of all kinds is best.
Drugs and High Blood Pressure
There are also a variety of medications and drugs that can cause hypertension. People addicted to street drugs, especially “uppers”, meth or cocaine, are very susceptible to high blood pressure. Many prescription drugs, and even those prescribed for depression or birth control, can also cause hypertension, and can be a frequent and common side effect while taking them. Depending on the ingredients, lots of over-the-counter medications can also raise blood pressure. Always read the labels on any medications you take, especially the list of side effects. And, don’t be shy about bringing this up with your doctor, as well as other possible alternative medications and treatment options. Never be afraid to ask your doctor to change your medication or the dosage if you think it may be causing a problem.
Diet and High Blood Pressure
People who have high blood pressure must look at how they eat. A wholesome and well balanced diet is crucial for good heart health. It is imperative that you eliminate ALL trans-fats from your diet, as well as high fructose corn syrup, both of which are absolute poison to the body. You also want to eliminate all artificial sweeteners, with the exception of stevia, and minimize your sugar intake. The bulk of your diet should be fresh fruits and vegetables, lean organic meat and fish, and choose potatoes over rice or pasta for your starch food. High blood pressure is something that can be controlled, as long as you are willing to take responsibility for your diet and lifestyle.
While there are additional causes of high blood pressure, these are amongst the most common, as well as the most preventable and reversible of causes. Being proactive with regards to our health, is a much easier path to health and well-being, vs. being reactive after our poor diet and poor lifestyle habits have caused harm. Heeding these high blood pressure prevention tips will not only help you avoid high blood pressure in the first place, but it can also help reverse it if you already have it.
(article courtesy of The Healthy Living Site)