Ways to Maintain Normal Blood Pressure
Blood Pressure is the force by which blood is pumped through the heart to the rest of the body.
It is quantified in systolic and diastolic pressures.
People usually get high blood pressure in their middle age.
However, if you take some necessary steps you can prevent it from happening in the future and you can maintain normal blood pressure if you are already diagnosed with hypertension.
This article discusses tips and ways to maintain normal blood pressure. Keep reading to know how you can benefit from having normal blood pressure.
What is Normal Blood Pressure?
You will usually have normal blood pressure (BP) throughout your day.
Your BP might increase if you take any stress. It may decrease if you are resting.
Though, it will remain constant throughout the day. Unless you have regular high blood pressure.
Systolic pressure is when the heart forces blood into the arteries.This is the upper limit of your BP.
Diastolic pressure is when the pressure drops between these heartbeats to pump blood.
This is the lower limit of your BP.
Low Blood Pressure (BP) is very rare but High Blood Pressure is pretty common.
If your resting BP keeps rising then your arteries stiffen and narrow down. Hence, this builds more pressure and results in the heart working harder to pump blood.
Normal blood pressure has a certain reading depending on your health and medical conditions.
How to Find Out My Blood Pressure?
A doctor or nurse will use a sphygmomanometer to measure your blood pressure.
They will first wrap a cuff around your arm above an artery.
Then using the sphygmomanometer they will inflate it till the point blood stops flowing at that position.
Following that they will deflate the cuff while hearing your heartbeat using a stethoscope.
The instant your heartbeat is heard, it is noted as systolic pressure.
When no more blood is pumped and the heartbeat stops, it is noted as diastolic blood pressure.
That’s how blood pressure is measured.
Blood pressure units are written as mm Hg and the systolic pressure is written above the diastolic pressure.
Normal Blood Pressure has a systolic pressure of 120 mm Hg and a diastolic pressure of 80 mm Hg.
Hence, it is written and called as 120 by 80 i.e. 120/80.
Prehypertension denotes systolic pressure between 120 and 139 and diastolic pressure between 80 and 89 mm Hg.
Anything above 139/89 mm Hg or 140/90 mm Hg is considered hypertension or high blood pressure.
Though, your blood pressure is checked several times to know if you regularly suffer from high blood pressure.
120 by 80 is considered the most ideal value for normal blood pressure. However, your normal blood pressure can differ according to age.
If your blood pressure readings are 130/800 mm Hg then you may be among people with high blood pressure.
However, as you age, your systolic blood pressure may increase. Hence, the upper limit of blood pressure numbers can go from 120 to 140 in males and 130 in females.
Your diastolic pressure may also decrease slightly from 80 as you age. However, there is fluctuation.
Hence, only your doctor can decide if a higher or lower value is considered normal according to your age.
What are Other Blood Pressures?
You can have high and low blood pressure if your BP is greatly different from the normal range.Your blood pressure is elevated when it ranged from 120 to 129mmHG and below 80mmHg.
If it exceeds 130 you enter Hypertension stage 1 and above 140 is considered stage 2.
Anything above 180/120 mm Hg is a hypertensive crisis.
High blood pressure stems from bad eating habits, smoking, consuming lots of alcohol and being obese.
If you have high BP, you have probably not adopted a healthy lifestyle and exercise.
Moreover, it can also occur as secondary hypertension.
Secondary hypertension happens suddenly because of an underlying condition.
These conditions include thyroid, kidney disease, medications like pain relievers and sleep apnea.
You are more susceptible to High BP as you age.
Though high levels of stress, more sodium and less potassium in your diet, smoking, obesity and underlying chronic conditions can give you high BP even in a young age.
You need to treat high BP with medications timely.
This is largely due to the fact that if it is left untreated, it can cause issues in your heart and kidneys.
High B.P can also result in stroke and other issues with the brain.
High Blood pressure can cause heart failure, dementia and memory loss, narrowed blood vessels and aneurysms.
You should immediately seek professional help if:
- Your head feels extremely heavy and you have a severe headache
- You have chest and back pain
- You have shortness of breath
- Are having difficulty speaking
- Are losing your vision
- Have a lot of sudden weakness and even feel numb
- You may bleed in your urine and have a nosebleed too
- You have an irregular heartbeat
These are all indicative of a hypertensive crisis. You should check with your doctor to seek medical attention.
However, some of these symptoms may also appear if you do not have a crisis but hypertension stage 1 and 2.
Low BP is very rare. If your BP drops to 90 by 60 mm Hg it is considered low.
It occurs mostly as a side effect of medications or as a sign of dehydration and medical conditions like heart and endocrine issues.
Pregnant women may also have bouts of low BP as the circulatory system expands. However, that is not as worrisome as it returns to normal after giving birth.
Other conditions like rapid blood loss, infections and allergic reactions can drop your BP.
So can a lacking diet. If you do not include Vitamin bB-12 and iron in your diet then your body does not make enough hemoglobin and red blood cells, hence decreasing your BP.
Though it is usually sudden and will be accompanied by a few symptoms.
You will suddenly feel dizzy, fatigued nauseous and you may also lose your concentration.
It is also possible that your vision fades and you blackout.
However, if you feel confused, your skin has suddenly turned pale and clammy, moreover, your heartbeat and breathing are weak but rapid then you should hurry to a doctor.
These are symptoms of extremely low BP which can actually result in a shock or even death.
A severe drop in BPcannot allow your organs to function properly.
This results in a drop of oxygen levels. The brain and heart receive less oxygen supply resulting in damage.
Maintaining normal blood pressure will help decrease the frequency of BP issues.
So, how can we maintain normal blood pressure? Find out below.
How to Maintain Normal Blood Pressure?
Coping with your high and low BP will help you maintain normal blood pressure. Simple lifestyle changes and prescribed medicines can help improve your quality of life.
It may seem hard to implement at first but all these measures will not only help maintain normal blood pressure but also prevent serious complications in the future.
Incorporate Exercise to Reduce Blood Pressure
It goes without saying that exercise can help you in this aspect.
If you suffer from high BP and want to bring it down to normal BP and maintain that, you will have to consider doing exercise regularly.
Weekly exercise of 150 minutes and daily exercise of at least 30 to 60 minutes can help decrease your BP from 5 to 8 mmHg.
Moreover, exercise stimulates the release of nitric acid in the body.
Nitric acid helps to open your blood vessels and does not narrow them which in return reduces BP.
Hence, if you do have elevated blood pressure, exercise can help lower it to normal levels.
Moreover, exercise encourages regular blood flow hence, there are fewer chances of it dropping to lower levels.
Furthermore, exercise strengthens your muscles of the heart, helps in keeping you stress-free (which also contributes to high BP) and reduces your weight (another factor for high BP).
Include aerobics and jogging, walking plus strength exercises in your routine.
If you want to maintain a healthy lifestyle and normal blood pressure, you can do any exercises you are able to.
However, if you want to lower your high BP then you should consult your doctor about the type of exercises you should avoid and do.
Eat a Healthy Diet and Lose an Excess Weight
A healthy lifestyle is synonymous with a healthy diet.
If you are filling yourself with fatty and oily foods they will affect your heart and overall health condition one day.
Eat a healthy diet can reduce your BP by 11 mmHg moreover, it can reduce your risk of ever developing high or low BP.
You should avoid high sodium content foods, fatty foods, more sugar and red meat.
You should eat more potassium found in fruits and vegetables.
Moreover, you can incorporate whole grains, fish, nuts, low-fat dairy, saturated fats and poultry in your diet.
An unhealthy diet is followed by excess weight.
Losing even about 10 pounds can greatly affect your BP and help you maintain normal levels.
BP goes up as weight increases. Moreover, it affects your breathing while sleeping.
This can lead to sleep apnea which can further increase your BP.
Hence, you should work on losing weight by exercising and eating healthy to maintain normal levels.
Quit Smoking and Alcohol
You should aim to quit smoking and alcohol as both of them can increase and decrease your BP.
Limiting your alcohol intake can decrease your BP by 4mmHg.
However, alcoholic drinks also contribute to low BP hence, you should either avoid them and drink plenty of nonalcoholic drinks instead.
In fact, alcohol also decreases the effectiveness of BP medicines that help to lower your bp.
Every time you smoke a cigarette, your BP increases.
Nicotine narrows your blood vessels hence, increases BP.
Therefore, even reducing smoking will not be as beneficial as quitting it.
Not only will you maintain normal blood pressure, but you will also avoid cardiovascular diseases and lung diseases in the long term.
Sodium helps to increase your BP. Hence, use sodium in a very moderate amount.
You should only take about a teaspoon of salt which is about 2400mg per day.
If you have low BP, you should constantly keep yourself hydrated.
Drink plenty of fluids but limit your caffeine intake as it can increase your BP.
Moreover, if you have low BP you should not sit and stand up quickly, you should sit for a while after waking up and then stand up.
You should avoid heavy lifting and strain in your stools. Furthermore, you should eat regular short meals to maintain normal levels.
You can maintain normal levels by de-stressing, and checking your BP on a regular basis after you turn 35.
Moreover, you should make meditation and stress relieving a regular part of your life.
Maintaining normal BP should start from an early age.
You need to take care of the foods you consume and the lifestyle you have in order to stay healthy.
It is not as tough as it seems but it will be so effective in the longer run.
We have extensively discussed maintaining normal blood pressure levels in this article. If you have any questions, let us know in the comments.