Common Factors Affecting Blood Pressure
High blood pressure can quietly do a lot of damage to the human body. It affects every organ, and unless you have it checked regularly, the first sign of trouble could be life altering or life ending. Knowing your numbers and the things that cause the pressure to rise could save your life.
The Usual Suspects
Sodium, fat and cholesterol are fairly easily recognized as causing all kinds of medical conditions, including this one. There are some caveats to that, though. Scientists don’t think sodium causes the problem, but if you already have it, this common ingredient to processed foods will cause it to rise.
Fat and cholesterol can cause a buildup of plaque in the arteries. This causes them to both harden and narrow, raising pressure. Fat can also add pounds to the waist line, which also causes a rise.
Dehydration: There is a strong link between blood pressure and dehydration. In many cases, the pressure goes up, though in a few it may go down. It does depend on other factors. It is not likely to be the only factor, but remember; eighty percent of use are constantly dehydrated and twenty-five percent of us have high BP.
Emotions: All strong emotions cause a reaction in our body. The negative emotions tend to raise pressure more, but excitement and other positive feelings will also do so.
Fear: Granting fear is an emotion, it has a secondary reaction that could increase the numbers even more; Fight or Flight Syndrome. The rush of Adrenalin increases heart rate, focuses attention and speeds up reaction time. All of these cause heightened pressure.
Heart Disease: No matter what causes heart problems, it’s going to have an affect. One factor may be the increased effort required to pump blood around the circulatory system.
Injuries/Pain: In this, I’m not referring to the original injury, as that reaction will be most likely part of the above mentioned Fight or Flight reaction. However, constant pain and injuries that take a while to heal are also guilty of raising blood pressure. That’s one reason pain management is such an important issue.
Kidney Disease: There is a cycle between high BP and kidney disease. They can each cause each other, and where one is, the other can follow. They are also both largely silent until a lot of damage has been done.
There are many things you can do to help reduce the chances you will develop this condition. There are also things you can do to lower it if it already exists. One of them is to talk with your doctor. This is true even if you wish to concentrate on alternative means over traditional. Bear in mind that you may not be able to do that safely at first, some changes may have to be made before it’s safe to rely only on natural remedies.
One that I use frequently is imaging. Imagine the setting of the 23rd Psalm. See the green pasture and the still water. Feel the companionship mentioned, and the table laden with good food. If that’s not something you wish to do, find a passage or imagine something similar. It can have a significant impact.
Garlic and Omega-3 fatty acids may also be a benefit. Studies indicate that they may play a role in reducing blood pressure. If you are taking blood thinners, anti-platelet medications or have a clotting disorder, check with your doctor before starting these supplements, as they may do the same thing.
Knowing what can cause your numbers to go up is an important first step to controlling it. This medical condition can do a lot of damage, but you don’t have to let it win.