Hypertension or raised blood pressure is a silent killer. In 2010, estimates suggested that approximately 31% of the world’s population suffered from this condition. The aetiology of hypertension is not clearly understood. Lifestyle factors like our diet, level of physical activity all contribute to this illness. Hypertensive patients show no symptoms and are almost always diagnosed incidentally.
An unhealthy diet is a major contributor to hypertension.
- Salt is the most important culprit causing hypertension. Table salt contains 40% sodium which is responsible for fluid balance in the body. More the sodium you eat, more water you retain and more the increase in your blood pressure. The AHA recommends salt intake to be within 1 teaspoon of salt per day. Avoiding foods high in salt is the cardinal step towards blood pressure control. Foods high in salt include, pizza, breads, crackers, tacos, burritos, etc.
- Deli meats, processed foods, canned foods are all high in sodium as its used for their preservation. These foods should therefore be avoided to keep sodium levels in check and hence the blood pressure.
- Foods high in saturated fats and trans fats are bad for the heart and therefore for hypertensive patients. Food high in saturated fats include, butter, ghee, cured meats like salami, chorizo and pancetta, fatty cuts of meats, etc.
- Sugar is the most widely used staple throughout the world, used in delicious, mouth-watering desserts and other dishes. Foods high in sugar cause weight gain and obesity both of which contribute to high blood pressure. The American heart association (AHA) recommends a daily intake of 25 gm for women and 36 gm for males.
- Alcohol, one of the widely enjoyed drinks around the globe is known to contribute to hypertension. Reducing alcohol intake is therefore a step towards health betterment.
Hypertension-The Risk Factor for Various Diseases
These debilitating illnesses include:
- CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASES: are associated with a remarkably high morbidity and mortality. Hypertension is one of the most important risk factors for CVDs. Increased blood pressure puts a whole lot of stress on the heart and contributes to atherosclerosis.
- STROKES AND DEMENTIA: atherosclerosis (hardening and narrowing) of the arteries supplying the brain caused by hypertension can lead to strokes and significant impairment of one’s life.
- ANEURYSMS: high blood pressures can cause outpouching of the walls of the vessels that are prone to burst. When burst, they are considered a life-threatening emergency.
- KIDNEY FAILURE: narrowing of the arteries due to hypertension can lead to lack of blood supply to the kidney leading to its failure.
- ERECTILE DYSFUNCTION: one of the most bothersome condition experienced by older men can be one of the complications of high blood pressure. A study conducted in 2018 estimated the prevalence of ED affecting one third of the men. High blood pressure affects the arteries of the penis reducing the flow of the blood into the penis and interfering with erection. One of the most successful treatments for ED are medications. Medications like sildenafil Oral jelly, tadalafil, vardenafil, avanafil have been remarkably effective in the treatment of ED. Finding authentic medications online from the comfort of your home can be a hard task. Visit website: Oz meds online to buy ED drugs online in Australia for the best prices right at your doorstep.
Hypertension treatment is a multiple regime treatment including pills like ACE inhibitors, beta blockers and diuretics, lifestyle, and dietary changes.
Treating hypertension is the cornerstone of preventing a multitude of other health conditions.
Better dietary habits can lead to better control of blood pressure, preventing diseases and upgrading a person’s quality of life.