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High blood pressure is one of the most common medical problem especially as we age.

Normal B.P is 120/80.Lot of factors contribute to high B.P like :

Stress and hectic lifestyle,obesity,family history,lack of exercise ,excessive salt intake all contribute to high B.P.As woman we wear many hats including being a chef and personal family physician.With that comes the responsibility that we teach our kids to eat healthy ,exercise and ways to control stress.So what can we do to prevent high B.P in our family members?Here are some of the tips

  • Avoid extra salt like salted chips,salted nuts,salted fries.Amount of salt(sodium) intake is 2300mg/day which is equal to 1 tsp or 6 gms a day.Average person takes 3400mg/day.
  • Avoid processed food,frozen food and canned food.Sodium is a preservative in many of these foods.
  • Avoid marinated sauces like barbecue sauce,soy sauce.One tsp of soy sauce has almost 891 mg of sodium(salt)
  • Avoid pickles,cheese,cottage cheese,cereals,salted bread
  • Remember everything we eat has salt in it including milk and yogurt although in less quantity
  • Eat more fresh fruits and vegetables
  • Exercise helps to lower B.P and other risk factors of heart disease like cholestrol
  • Monitor your B.P regularly after the age of 50.Check your B.P with arm cuff B.P monitor and learn how to take B.P properly

Few of the things that can effect the reading of B.P are :

  • Wrist B.P monitors
  • Cuff size of B.P monitor is not proper size.Obese people may need larger cuff for accurate B.P reading
  • Be well rested and place your arm at heart level(on the dining table) and uncross your legs while checking B.P
  • Your B.P can be high right after exercise,caffeine,restless night sleep and anxiety
  • Many times readings at doctor’s office are higher which is called white coat syndrome.That is why it is important to check your B.P at home when you are well rested and anxiety of being in the doctor’s office is less.
  • Take your B.P readings to your doctor’s visit.Write down the time when you checked the B.P and when did you take your B.P medicine,if you are taking one.
  • Get your blood work especially your kidney function and cholesterol levels at least every 6 months to 1 year
  •  Let your doctor know of all medications including over the counter meds that you take.Lot of medications like pain pills if taken on regular basis can raise your B.P
  • Uncontrolled B.P can cause heart disease and stroke

This article is contributed by Sun Radiology.