When you’ve been diagnosed with high blood pressure, what’s next? Learn how it can affect you and what you can do about it.
High blood pressure happens when blood pressure increases to unhealthy levels, leading to heart disease among other issues. In recent years, the ACC and AHA published new high blood pressure guidelines which put nearly half of Americans in the hypertension category.
There are two types of hypertension (high blood pressure): primary and secondary. Most people know about primary hypertension, which develops over time due to various unidentifiable factors like genes, lifestyle, and environment.
Conversely, secondary hypertension develops quickly and may be more severe than primary hypertension. It can happen as a result of drugs, kidney disease, congenital heart defects, adrenal gland problems, thyroid issues, and more.
High Blood Pressure Treatments
To find the best treatment option for your high blood pressure, it’s important to identify if you have primary or secondary hypertension. If you have primary hypertension, lifestyle changes and medications are the norm, while treating the underlying condition is used for secondary hypertension treatments.
If your doctor deems it necessary to prescribe you medication, you may need to try different medicines until you find the one that works for you. Some of the medications used include beta-blockers, diuretics, ACE inhibitors, calcium channel blockers, angiotensin II receptor blockers, and more.
There are things you can do at home to help lower your blood pressure, whether you have hypertension or not. For example, you can eat a healthy diet that is rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins like fish.
You can also increase your physical activity levels to lower blood pressure naturally and strengthen your cardiovascular system. Current recommendations from the AHA suggest you make it a goal to get 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week.
In addition to boosting your health, exercising will help you lose weight if you are overweight (another factor in hypertension). Some people also find that exercise is a great way to manage stress, which can help you get better sleep and boost your heart health.
Finally, by adopting a cleaner lifestyle where you don’t smoke or drink copious amounts of alcohol, you’ll make a difference. Tobacco smoke can damage the body’s tissues and blood vessel walls while drinking too much alcohol can increase blood pressure.
Making changes to your diet is one of the easiest ways you can treat high blood pressure. There are different diets and eating plans that can help you treat hypertension such as the DASH diet.
General recommendations suggest that you eat less red meat and opt for lean proteins and more vegetables and fruits. Avoid sugary foods and beverages, as these contain a bunch of empty calories and no nutritional value.
You should also limit your daily sodium intake to no more than 1,500 mg per day. Usually, restaurant and prepackaged foods are high in sodium, so avoid these as much as possible.
Besides lifestyle and dietary changes, you can add heart supplements like L-arginine Plus to your daily health routine. Whatever plan you choose, the important thing is to stay on top of your heart health – L-arginine Plus can help with that.