What Causes Your Pressure to Rise?
You may have high blood pressure and not even be aware of it because you don’t have any obvious symptoms. Blood pressure is best explained as the force that blood exerts on the walls of your arteries known as the “systolic pressure,” which occurs with each heartbeat (contraction). This contraction is compared to the force when the heart is at rest, known as the diastolic pressure (between beats). To simplify this further, systolic pressure is the top number and is normally higher than origdiastolic pressure, the bottom
number. As an example, if your readings of systolic pressure are 120 or less over diastolic pressure that is 80 or less, you are in the normal range for most individuals. Your blood pressure is considered elevated if your range is 121-129 over 80. It is considered high if your range is 130-139 over 80-89 (considered hypertension stage 1). The medical condition “high blood pressure” or “hypertension” is considered when your readings are 140 or higher over 90 or higher. If your range is higher then 180 over 120 or more, you are in hypertensive crisis and need to seek medical attention. Your blood pressure is affected by the diameter of the vessels, the amount of blood that flows through them and the elasticity of the vessel walls. Controlling these three factors is also the key to controlling blood pressure. Your blood pressure can rise or fall based on something as simple as controlling dehydration. When you are dehydrated, there is less fluid in your system, which can affect blood flow. Whereas, atherosclerosis (the build-up of plaque on blood vessel walls) narrows the passageway, which is a more serious cause for increased blood pressure. However, the leading cause of high blood pressure is the loss of elasticity on the blood vessel walls. As you age, your blood vessels naturally lose some elasticity, which is why the incidence of blood pressure seems to be higher as you age. Other factors that affect the blood vessel walls are lifestyle, physical inactivity, excessive drinking, overweight, high sodium diet and low potassium levels. Regular use of some prescribed drugs such as NSAIDS, decongestants, and some herbal supplements (particularly ephedra and St. John’s Wort) can also contribute to high blood pressure.
The Natural Approach to Hypertension
High blood pressure silently wears away sensitive heart vessels until it permanently damages the blood vessels, heart muscle and kidneys. Preventing and controlling blood pressure starts with lifestyle changes, reduced sodium intake and increased potassium, either through a daily supplement such as Natural Factors Potassium or by increasing your potassium-rich foods. Several supplements have been researched and show benefits of improving blood vessel walls, reducing arterial plaque, and both managing and lowering blood pressure. COQ10 is an antioxidant that helps your cells produce energy, it can also help reduce your blood pressure. It is believed that a deficiency in this
particular enzyme may be partly to blame for hypertension in older adults. The recommended dosage is 100mg-200mg per day. Look for a product such as Natural Factors Ubiquinol Active CoQ10Acetyl-L-Carnitine may help control blood pressure and blood sugar by positively affecting the enzymes that control blood sugar and a specific protein (adiponectin), which increases nitric acid (naturally occurring acid in the body) that helps to relax blood vessels and increase positive blood flow. Calcium and Magnesium supplements are not just for bone health. Magnesium helps your blood vessels relax, and calcium helps blood vessels to tighten and relax. Together, a calcium and magnesium supplement such as Natural Factors Cal-Mag Citrate can provide an excellent balance to blood pressure prevention with the added benefits of bone health. More evidence is needed for hypertension, but Pycnogenolfrom French Maritime Pine Bark helps strengthen capillaries and blood vessel walls and improves circulation. It may come as no surprise that another recommended supplement for Hypertension is Omega 3 fatty acids. Omega 3 helps protect the endothelium (layer of cells that line your blood vessels), which, in turn, positively affects the contraction and relaxation of blood vessels and promotes positive blood flow. Other natural products that show promise are garlic, Anthocyanins (bilberry, blueberry, grape seed extract) and garlic supplements. The natural health products mentioned above could interfere with your prescribed medications. Check with your healthcare provider before consuming.
Connect with us