It’s not uncommon for people to experience a rapid heart rate after a large meal. This happens because the body releases adrenaline as it mobilizes energy.
The main cause of high blood pressure is eating too much or too little. This can happen because of the effects of adrenaline.
How is high blood pressure treated?
Most people with high blood pressure don’t require treatment. However, many may benefit from lifestyle changes or medication.
In the case of high blood pressure, lifestyle changes are often enough to control the condition.
If you have high blood pressure, you can make some lifestyle changes. These may include:
- Reducing salt and alcohol intake
- Getting more exercise
- Losing weight if you’re overweight
- Getting more sleep
- Reducing stress
Some people may need medication. This is typically prescribed by a doctor. It can reduce your blood pressure for a short term.
If your blood pressure remains high despite lifestyle changes, your doctor may prescribe:
- Benazepril (Lotensin)
- Captopril (Capoten)
- Enalapril (Vasotec)
- Lisinopril (Prinivil, Zestril)
- Losartan (Cozaar, Lotrel)
How is high blood pressure prevented?
There are several ways to prevent high blood pressure.
You can help prevent high blood pressure by:
If you have high blood pressure, you can help prevent it in several ways, including:
- Eating a balanced diet
- Maintaining a healthy weight
When should you call your doctor?
If you have high blood pressure, you should see your doctor for regular checkups.
You should make an appointment to see your doctor if you notice symptoms of high blood pressure, such as:
- Chest pain
- Shortness of breath
- Irregular heartbeat
- Swelling in your feet, ankles, or legs
- Darkening of your skin or eyes
- Abdominal pain
- Unusual sweating
- Muscle cramps
- Cold sweat
- Blurred vision
- Increased urine volume
- Muscle spasms
- High blood sugar
Your doctor may recommend lifestyle changes to help reduce your blood pressure. They may also recommend medication.
For example, in some cases, they may prescribe a combination of medication and lifestyle changes to help control high blood pressure.
How can you improve your blood pressure?
You can improve your blood pressure by making lifestyle changes.
You should make lifestyle changes to help reduce high blood pressure by:
- Changing your diet
- Losing weight
A healthy lifestyle may help prevent high blood pressure. It can also help you manage high blood pressure if you have it.
Taking these steps may reduce your chances of developing high blood pressure:
- Eat a diet rich in potassium, magnesium, and calcium
- Eat plenty of low-salt foods
- Exercise at least 30 minutes most days of the week
- Limit alcohol consumption
- Limit caffeine intake
- Limit your intake of sodium
- Limit your intake of saturated and trans fats
- Eat a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and legumes
- Get plenty of sleep
- Avoid smoking
- Limit your intake of foods that are high in sugar or sodium
- Manage stress
- Get enough rest
A doctor may recommend these additional steps to help manage high blood pressure:
- Monitor your blood pressure at home
- Have your blood pressure checked regularly
- Have your blood pressure checked at least twice a year
- If your blood pressure is high, be sure to monitor your treatment
- Make sure you’re taking all prescribed medications
- Limit your salt intake
High blood pressure is a common condition. If you have it, you should talk to your doctor about your risk factors and take steps to manage it.
The earlier you take action, the more likely you are to prevent high blood pressure. This can reduce your risk of complications, such as heart attack, stroke, and kidney disease.
What is high blood pressure?
High blood pressure is when the pressure in your arteries is too high. This can cause heart disease.
Your blood pressure is the amount of pressure your blood exerts on the walls of your arteries.
High blood pressure is measured in millimeters of mercury (mm Hg).
When you have high blood pressure, your blood pressure is higher than normal. This is often measured in numbers.
For example, your blood pressure may be 130/80 mm Hg. This means your systolic blood pressure is 130 and your diastolic blood pressure is 80.
What causes high blood pressure?
High blood pressure happens when your heart and blood vessels can’t supply enough blood to meet the body’s needs.
A number of factors can cause high blood pressures, including:
- Age. High blood pressures are more common in older people.
- Certain lifestyle factors, such as being overweight or smoking
- Family history of high blood pressures
- High levels of stress
- Diet. Certain foods, such as salt, sugar, and saturated and trans fats can increase blood pressure
- Certain medications, such as some anti-anxiety medications, antidepressants, and anti-hypertensive medications
- Certain medical conditions, such as hyperthyroidism, chronic kidney disease, or liver disease
- Certain drugs, such as birth control pills or corticosteroids
- Gender. Women are at higher risk of having high blood pressures than men
How is high blood blood pressure diagnosed?
Your doctor can diagnose high blood hypertension with a physical exam, a health history, and blood tests.
Your doctor may order:
- Blood tests. This test measures your heart rate, blood pressure, and heart rhythm, as well as your levels of certain hormones.
- Electrocardiogram (ECG). This test measures the electrical activity in your heart.
- Echocardiogram (echo). This test uses sound waves to view your heart’s pumping function.
- Stress test. This test measures your heart rate and blood pressure during exercise.
- Visual blood pressure testing. This test is used to measure blood pressure in the arms and legs.
- Pulse oximetry. This test measures the level of oxygen in your blood.
The bottom line
High blood pressures are a common problem that can lead to heart disease.
To prevent high blood pressures, you should:
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