Suffering from high blood pressure can be a danger sign as far as your physical health is concerned. This condition cannot be ignored since it could lead to other more serious ailments in the future, including heart attack or even death. Fortunately, there are several actions and changes in behavior you can pursue which can help to keep your blood pressure under control.
Lose extra pounds
Usually, the more a person weighs the higher blood pressure he or she will tend to have. This is why dropping some weight, especially for those who are considered overweight, is one of the most effective ways to control your blood pressure. For every kilogram (approximately 2.2 lbs.) of body weight you lose your blood pressure will decrease by 1 millimeter of mercury (mm HG), generally speaking.
One way of helping you lose the extra weight, and as a result helping to lower your blood pressure, is through consistent exercise. How much you exercise will depend on what your living situation allows and your own physical capabilities. About 30 minutes per day, five days per week, or 2.5 hours per week, has been shown to potentially lower a person’s blood pressure by approximately 5 to 8 mm HG.
Another key component to lowering your blood pressure is to maintain healthy eating habits. One dietary plan which is designed specifically for the purpose of dealing with high blood pressure is the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH).
This dietary plan entails avoiding foods that are high in saturated fats and cholesterol. Also, you should include plenty of whole grains, vegetables, fruits, and low-fat dairy products. Eating a healthy diet such as this is believed to lower your blood pressure by as much as 11 mm HG.
Reduce sodium intake
Too much sodium can be detrimental to your efforts to control your blood pressure levels. It is suggested that you limit your daily sodium intake to 2,300 mg or less. But, for most adults, 1,500 mg daily or less is usually ideal. However, you may want to check with your doctor to determine what is best for your particular situation.
Avoid too much alcohol
Although it is generally believed that drinking one alcoholic beverage per day for women and two for men can possibly reduce your blood pressure, overconsuming alcohol can be highly detrimental to your health and can make your blood pressure higher. Drinking too much alcohol can also decrease the effectiveness of blood pressure medication.
For those looking to control their blood pressure, it is essential to stop smoking cigarettes or at least smoke as little as possible. Every cigarette you smoke causes your blood pressure to go up for many minutes afterwards. If you quit smoking for good you can significantly minimize your chances of developing serious heart disease. Also, those who stop smoking tend to live longer than those who never quit.
Live to see your golden years
For many people the goal of maintaining good health has much to do with being able to live long enough to retire. Therefore, controlling your blood pressure and other aspects of your health is essential.
On the other hand, another part of being ready for retirement has to do with your personal finances. It will not be an enjoyable retirement if you do not have enough resources to sustain the lifestyle quality that you want. Make sure to create a comprehensive financial plan that will help you achieve your retirement goals.