Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Causes of High Blood Pressure

High Blood Pressure

In most cases of high blood pressure causes of the condition remain unknown. Irrespective of the high blood pressure causes treatment can be provided to minimize the ill effects of high blood pressure and relieve high blood pressure symptoms like anxiety and headaches. Although there may not always be specific causes of high blood pressure it is undeniable that there are certain conditions that could contribute to or significantly increase the risk of developing high blood pressure. While not all of these factors are controllable, awareness about them does make us conscious of the existence of the risk of high blood pressure, and consequently keeps us alert to the warning signs. The practice of breathing exercises, switching to specific diet foods, and herbs or supplements can help lower blood pressure naturally.

Age: This is one of the biggest risk factors for elevated blood pressure levels and as you age the risk of developing high blood pressure keeps increasing. In the past the age group affected may have been higher, but with the changes to our lifestyle and increased stress levels, pollution and unhealthy diets high blood pressure has also begin to affect younger adults, which is why it is best to start going for annual checkups after the age of eighteen.

Diet: Diets with a high fat content are one of the major causes of high blood pressure. A high blood pressure diet plan or chart will always exclude foods like red meats, junk foods, and other fried or refined foods. There are plenty of healthy alternatives and you can prepare your own high blood pressure diet menu, with recipes for high blood pressure from internet resources. Most of the foods that cause high blood pressure are the ones that are high in sugar content, hydrogenated oils and trans fatty acids. Salty foods, fatty dairy products, greasy and deep fried foods and fatty meat products should all be avoided or eaten sparingly to avoid high blood pressure problems.

Stress: The relationship between stress and high blood pressure cannot be understated and its contribution to increased incidence of the condition in modern society is undeniable. Stress related disorders are on the rise because increasing levels of competitiveness and tremendous technological growth that has changed the urban and social landscape. This stress could either be emotional stress or even physical stress in the individual.

Racial Factors: African Americans are believed to be at a higher risk of developing high blood pressure as compared to Caucasians and this is also likely to occur earlier in life and cause complications of greater severity.

Socio-Economic Status: Although high blood pressure may be uniformly prevalent across all sections of society, the less educated and lower socio-economic groups may be more affected because of a lack of awareness and also a lack of access to quality diets.

Heredity: This is another factor that cannot be controlled and people with a family history of high blood pressure are predisposed to developing the condition.

Gender: Men are generally thought to be a lot more likely to develop high blood pressure as compared to women, but this could vary in different populations. While all of these factors may be uncontrollable there are some things that we can control.

Body Weight: Obesity is known to be one of the biggest risk factors for developing high blood pressure because blood pressure rises with increasing weight. It is highly advisable for anyone who is overweight to attempt to reduce some weight through healthy methods like dieting and working out. Patterns of weight gain are also believed to indicate the risk of obesity to some extent as those who gain weight mainly around the abdominal area are at higher risk, while those who gain weight on the hips and thighs, although at risk would not be as susceptible.

Salt: Some individuals have greater sensitivity to sodium and the consumption of salt will therefore cause a rise in blood pressure. In such a scenario, simply cutting down on salt intake would lower blood pressure naturally. High blood pressure diets are typically low in salt.

Alcohol Consumption: Excessive alcohol consumption is also known to raise blood pressure levels, particularly in those sensitive to alcohol.

Medications and Contraceptives: Women who have been on contraceptive pills may be at increased risk of developing high blood pressure and the use of certain medications like diet pills or amphetamines could also contribute to the problem.

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