What is blood pressure?


Blood pressure monitor

By Mary-Ann Shearer

Blood pressure is the pressure of the blood against the walls of the arteries. Blood pressure results from two forces. One is created by the heart as it pumps blood into the arteries and through the circulatory system. The other is the force of the arteries as they resist the blood flow.

What do blood pressure numbers indicate?

  • The higher (systolic) number represents the pressure while the heart contracts to pump blood to the body.
  • The lower (diastolic) number represents the pressure when the heart relaxes between beats.

The systolic pressure is always stated first. For example: 118/76 (118 over 76); systolic = 118, diastolic = 76.

Optimal vs. High Blood Pressure

Blood pressure below 120 over 80 mmHg (millimeters of mercury) is considered optimal for adults. A systolic pressure of 120 to 139 mmHg or a diastolic pressure of 80 to 89 mmHg is considered “prehypertension” and needs to be watched carefully. A blood pressure reading of 140 over 90 or higher is considered elevated (high).

Traditionally any blood pressure measurement over 120/80 is considered high and steps need to be taken to lower it. The medical route is to take blood pressure lowering the blood pressure.

Side effect of High Blood Presure medication

What people are seldom aware of is that the side effects of the medication are often just as bad, if not worse than the risk of heart disease. Some of the side effects are;

  • hives
  • rashes
  • sensitivity to light
  • joint aches
  • confusion
  • loss of libido (sexual vigour)
  • weakness
  • dizziness
  • lack of energy
  • numbness in the extremities
  • depression
  • anger
  • moodiness
  • muscle spasms
  • kidney damage
  • gout
  • long term side effects of diabetes.

How can you lower your blood pressure naturally?

Blood pressure responds very quickly to a change in diet and when you realize that the hormonal system controls blood pressure, you can begin to understand just how this works.

Caffeine, for starters has a known effect on the endocrine (or hormonal) system and can raise (or lower) blood pressure for those predisposed to blood pressure problems. Other foods are substances are artificial sweeteners, animal protein and dairy products (contain arachidonic acid, which raises blood pressure), aspartame sweeteners, lack of essential fatty acids, lack of exercise etc. I recommend that you read my separate notes on the endocrine (hormonal system) for details on how this system controls blood pressure.

Remove all arachidonic acid as its function is to raise blood pressure. Arachidonic acid is found in abundance in animal flesh and research shows clearly that vegetarians and vegans have lower blood pressure than meat eaters.

A good source of Omega 3 & 6 is essential – eating avocado, raw nuts and seeds, olives, olive oil, and taking a good supplement like Aim’s Aimega is essential

Exercise & Sunlight regulate the endocrine system, which controls blood pressure – 20-30 minutes daily is ideal.

For an overall program that will help you correct endocrine function and blood pressure, log onto www.100daystohealth.com  and follow the program.


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