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Ways to Control High Blood Pressure

Age, race, weight, gender, and family history can increase the risk of High Blood Pressure.

Web Desk:

More than one in three adults in the U.S. has high blood pressure or hypertension. This can be dangerous because high blood pressure can lead to life-threatening conditions like a heart attack or stroke.

Early diagnosis, a healthy lifestyle, and adopting a few positive habits instead of ignoring them can keep high blood pressure from seriously damaging your health.

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Blood pressure is the force of your blood pushing against the walls of your arteries. Anyone can develop high blood pressure, but age, race or ethnicity, weight, gender, and family history are certain factors that can increase your risk.

If you’ve been diagnosed with high blood pressure, you might be worried about taking medication to bring your numbers down. If you successfully control your blood pressure with a healthy lifestyle, you might avoid, delay or reduce the need for medication.

Eat a healthy diet: To help manage your blood pressure, one should limit the amount of sodium, and increase the amount of potassium in the diet. Eating a diet that is rich in whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and low-fat dairy products and skimps on saturated fat and cholesterol can lower your blood pressure by up to 11 mm Hg if you have high blood pressure.

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Lose extra pounds: Being overweight or having obesity increases your risk for high blood pressure. Blood pressure often increases as weight increases. Being overweight also can cause disrupted breathing while you sleep, which further raises your blood pressure. Weight loss is one of the most effective lifestyle changes for controlling blood pressure. In general, you may reduce your blood pressure by about 1 millimeter of mercury (mm Hg) with each kilogram about 2.2 pounds of weight you lose.

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Exercise regularly: Exercise can help you maintain a healthy weight and lower your blood pressure. Regular physical activity, such as 150 minutes a week, or about 30 minutes most days of the week, can lower your blood pressure by about 5 to 8 mm Hg if you have high blood pressure.

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Limit the amount of alcohol: Alcohol can be both good and bad for your health. By drinking alcohol only in moderation can potentially lower your blood pressure by about 4 mm Hg. Drinking more than moderate amounts of alcohol can actually raise blood pressure by several points. It can also reduce the effectiveness of blood pressure medications.

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Quit smoking: Each cigarette you smoke increases your blood pressure for many minutes after you finish and puts you at higher risk for heart attack and stroke. Stopping smoking helps your blood pressure return to normal.

Photo Courtesy: Medical News Today

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