Blood Pressure

Blood pressure is the pressure that the blood exerts on the inner walls of our arteries. Our arteries main job is to transport blood from our heart to other parts of our body.

Our blood pressure is assessed using two measurements, the systolic pressure and the diastolic pressure. The systolic pressure represents the pressure that occurs when to heart contracts . The diastolic pressure is the pressure that occurs when the heart relaxes.

Knowing your blood pressure reading is important. An elevated blood pressure makes the heart and arteries work harder. A sustained high blood pressure can lead to stroke, heart attack, heart failure and kidney failure.

A normal blood pressure should be less than 120/80. The top number represents the systolic pressure and the bottom number represents the diastolic pressure.

A doctor may diagnose you with hypertension( high blood pressure) if you blood pressure readings are greater than 130/80. The guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment of hypertension are always evolving. A combination of lifestyle changes and sometimes medications are used to manage and treat hypertension.

Some lifestyle changes that can help decrease blood pressure include reducing salt in your diet, weight loss, eating a diet rich is whole grains, fruits and vegetables, exercise, and reducing alcohol intake

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