Blood pressure is the force of blood pushing against the walls of your arteries. Your blood pressure is measured with two numbers, your systolic and diastolic blood pressure levels. The systolic number is the pressure of your heart contracting and pushing out blood, this is the top number. The diastolic number is when your heart relaxes and fills with blood, this is the bottom number. A normal blood pressure level is a systolic level under 120 and a diastolic level less than 80. High blood pressure is very common in older adults and can cause major health problems such as strokes, heart disease, and kidney failure. It is vital to maintain good blood pressure to decrease health risks and live a healthy life.
Anyone can develop high blood pressure but there are some uncontrollable risk factors that can increase your risk for high BP levels. The first is age, as you age your risk for high blood pressure increases. As you age your arteries and vascular system change making your arteries stiffer which increases your blood pressure. This makes it crucial to maintain a healthy lifestyle throughout your life to mitigate this. Family history is an uncontrollable factor that can also impact your risk, if high blood pressure runs in your family take extra care to monitor your BP.
On the other hand, there are some risks that are in your control. Being overweight and having a high body mass index can lead to higher risks of high blood pressure. Lack of exercise, poor diet, and high salt levels contribute to being overweight as well as increased BP. Drinking alcohol and smoking are activities that have been shown to result in higher blood pressure levels. Furthermore, high-stress levels and lack of sleep can lead to higher BP levels. These are the risks that are crucial to focus on and monitor. Watching these risks and mitigating them accordingly can greatly reduce your risks and decrease your chances of high blood pressure and complications.
Your BMI or body mass index is a measure of your height and weight, as your BMI increases so do the chance of obesity and heart complications. To maintain good blood pressure and body mass index it is crucial to maintain a healthy diet, limit sodium intake, and have a consistent exercise routine. A diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains will arm you with the nutrients and energy you need for each day while keeping your blood pressure low. Furthermore, limiting processed foods and take out meals will automatically help decrease salt levels. Maintaining a consistent exercise routine will help keep your weight low and blood pressure low and provide many other benefits. Aim for 30 minutes of moderate activity 5 days a week. Keeping these considerations in mind will help you maintain a healthy BMI and decrease your risk for high blood pressure.
Lowering your blood pressure and your body mass index is possible by changing day-to-day habits. Making these life changes will decrease disease risk, lower your weight and increase your overall well-being. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle can lead to staying independent, increased mood, improved physical fitness, and a happier life. These changes will positively impact your day-to-day life and your overall well-being. While there are some unavoidable risks the avoidable ones are just as important. Taking control and taking the time to mitigate your risks will vastly improve your health and your life.