A recent study found that high blood pressure is rising in McKinney, Texas. It has been called a “silent killer” because it often doesn’t produce any symptoms until it is advanced. One out of three adults aged 18-65 have hypertension and don’t know about it. If left untreated for long periods, this can lead to serious health problems like heart disease or stroke. This is why visiting a specialist in high blood pressure in McKinney, TX, means a lot. They will guide you on the best lifestyle adjustments to make. Here are some practical ways to reduce your risk of developing high blood pressure.
- Limiting Sodium in Your Diet
As sodium is a leading cause of high blood pressure, the American Heart Association recommends limiting sodium intake to 1500 mg per day. If you are over 40, African-American, or suffer from hypertension, diabetes, or chronic kidney disease, limit your daily intake of sodium to 1200mg.
You can avoid processed foods and eat more fresh vegetables and fruits. Eating less meat and dairy products is also a good idea as these foods contain high amounts of sodium.
- Exercise Regularly
The American Heart Association recommends getting at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise 5 days a week. This can be as simple as walking your dog, taking the stairs instead of the elevator, or taking up swimming; it’s all good! If you are severely overweight, start with light exercise like walking and more intense activities like jogging over time.
- Choosing Whole Grains Instead of White Bread
Whole grains contain small amounts of fiber which help reduce blood pressure by 2-3 points, lowering your risk further. Studies have found that white bread raises triglycerides (a type of fat in the bloodstream), contributing to high blood pressure. So avoid white bread and choose unprocessed whole grains instead, such as steel-cut oats, brown rice, or quinoa.
- Get Enough Sleep
Not getting enough sleep puts you at risk of high blood pressure in the long run. This is because lack of sleep can lead to resistance to insulin, which can increase your risk of diabetes and heart disease. It also increases the production of cortisol (the stress hormone) which contributes to high blood pressure.
- Cut Back on Sugary Drinks
Sugary drinks are bad for weight management and are also associated with high blood pressure. One study found that participants who drank one sugary drink per day increased their risk of high blood pressure by 24%. This is because the sugar in these drinks raises your triglycerides, contributing to high blood pressure.
If you have trouble giving up sodas, mix seltzer water with fruit juice to make a healthier soda. Instead of sodas, you can also opt for naturally sweetened or unsweetened teas and flavored waters.
Drink green tea daily as well. Studies have shown that drinking 1- 3 cups of green tea daily can help reduce blood pressure by 4-10 points. The antioxidants in green tea do this by thinning the blood and relaxing the walls of your arteries, thus improving blood flow. Green tea also helps flush out excess amounts of sodium, which will lower your risk further.
High blood pressure is on the rise, and it’s essential to take steps to reduce your risk of developing it. These include limiting sodium intake, exercising regularly, drinking green tea daily, getting enough sleep, and cutting back on sugary drinks. Implementing these tips into your lifestyle will help keep your blood pressure in check and improve your overall health.