High blood pressure is a leading cause of mortality and disability in the United Kingdom.
Commonly known as hypertension, it causes the heart to work harder to pump blood out of the body, which can lead to atherosclerosis, stroke, renal disease, and heart failure.
It affects one in every three persons in the United Kingdom, and at least one in every two people over the age of 55.
How Do You Read Your Blood Pressure?
An example of a normal blood pressure reading is 120/80. The top number is referred to as the systolic, while the lower number is referred to as the diastolic.
The ranges are the following:
- Normal: Less than 120 over 80 (120/80)
- Elevated: 120-129/less than 80
- Stage 1 high blood pressure: 130-139/80-89
- Stage 2 high blood pressure: 140 and above/90 and above
- Hypertension crisis: higher than 180/higher than 120, must require an immediate consultation
What are the Unknown Causes of High Blood Pressure?
People who keep track of their blood pressure are often aware of the more frequent causes of high blood pressure such as a diet high in salt, fat, cholesterol, stress and lack of physical activity.
However, there are still a number of unfamiliar causes that can contribute to hypertension:
1. Sleep Apnoea Conditions
A rise in blood pressure can be caused by sleep apnoea, a sleep disease in which a person pauses and resumes breathing numerous times throughout the night. One of the most important risk factors for developing sleep apnoea is obesity; another is old age.
Maintaining a healthy weight, practising yoga, taking breathing strips and a proper bed position can help relieve this condition.
2. Outdoor Air Pollution
There is mounting evidence that air pollution can raise blood pressure and exacerbate hypertension. Acute increases in arterial blood pressure can be triggered by sudden or short-term increases in outdoor air pollution levels.
Staying indoors and changing your air filters are the easiest way to breathe ‘cleaner’ air. If there’s a need to go out in the city, wear an N95 mask.
3. Black Liquorice
This treat is tricky. Black liquorice may be harmful to your health, and not simply because of its high sugar content. The liquorice root chemical glycyrrhizin is present in the candy, and it can cause the body to retain a lot of salt and water, raising blood pressure.
4. Alcoholic Drinks
Despite the fact that wine is said to be excellent for the heart, alcohol can raise blood pressure in the short and long term. While alcohol relaxes blood vessels at first, when it is metabolised by the liver, those arteries begin to constrict. The day after drinking, blood pressure may be higher than normal. If excessive drinking becomes a habit, blood pressure levels will rise.
Keep yourself hydrated and healthy by drinking water instead of beer.
Once in a while, we experience sudden headaches and joint pains and we take meds to experience instant relief. When you go to the medicine cabinet, be careful what you grab as Ibuprofen, acetaminophen, and naproxen are examples of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medicines that might elevate blood pressure.
6. Carbs and Sweets
Your sweet tooth can bite you back. When we consume sugar, our systems release insulin to assist in the elimination of sugar from the bloodstream and into the cells, where it may be utilised for energy. Insulin, on the other hand, has a tendency to raise blood pressure.
Soft drinks, pastries, cookies, and yoghurts all have added sugar.
7. Cigarette Smoking
Nicotine is the culprit. Smoking, which has been linked to lung diseases, heart attacks and strokes, can also raise blood pressure. It causes your blood vessels to constrict and your heart to beat quicker, while your life gets shorter.
Quitting is a difficult challenge for smokers, but the fact that it can extend your life is rewarding.
8. Other Existing Health Conditions
High blood pressure can be caused by an excess of a hormone called aldosterone, which can be difficult to regulate with medicine. People who haven’t been able to control their blood pressure with various drugs should speak with their doctor since there’s a significant probability they have primary aldosteronism.
High blood pressure may also indicate a problem with the kidneys or thyroid gland. It can potentially indicate a potassium deficiency, too. This can be lowered by increasing the quantity of potassium in your diet where fruits and vegetables are excellent sources.
Half of the people with high blood pressure are not diagnosed or receiving treatment. In England alone, there are more than five million people that are undiagnosed – and this is something that must be addressed by the healthcare system.
This disease is known as the silent killer since it normally causes no symptoms. A check is the only way to be sure you have it. It is suggested to have every member in your family monitor their blood pressure so that if it is elevated, it may be treated quickly, lowering your chance of a deadly stroke or heart attack.