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Hypertension: A Wake-Up Alarm for Your Health!

Updated on June 17, 2018
Divya Kasarle 92 profile image

Divya Kasarle is a genetics researcher with an MSc. degree in Genetics.

What is hypertension?

Hypertension withstands a long-term medical condition. It involves an elevated level of blood pressure in the arteries. This condition is also known as high blood pressure.

Dietary sodium is primarily responsible for causing elevated blood pressure. Salty items or salt-rich foods may contribute to the risk of hypertension. Apart from this factor, there are other factors that are responsible for hypertension like environment, eating habits, activity, diet, lifestyle, heredity, genetics, stress, smoking, and consumption of alcohol.

What does World Health Organisation say about Hypertension?

Blood pressure is measured as a millimeter of mercury. It is denoted as "mmHg." A millimeter of mercury is the unnecessary pressure generated by a mercury column usually one millimeter high.

People with a systolic blood pressure ranging from 120 to 139 mmHg or a diastolic blood pressure of 80 to 89 mmHg are considered as borderline hypertensives. People with borderline hypertension may need rapid changes in diet and lifestyle.

Source

Creating awareness of hypertension

World Hypertension day was initiated by the World Hypertension League. The theme of deciding this day was to encourage awareness of hypertension among the masses. Ideal blood pressure must be less than 140/90 mmHg. The cut-off values for elevated blood pressure were decided by International and Canadian guidelines. World Health Organization has declared that even if a person in the middle age has enjoyed normal blood pressure, there are significant chances of developing hypertension later on.

Worldwide statistical data on hypertension

Statistics in the United States:

  • About 75 million American adults have hypertension.
  • Only about 45% of people with hypertension are able to bring their blood pressure levels next to normal.
  • Elevated blood pressure costs the nation approximately 48 billion dollars per year, which includes the cost of medications, healthcare services and missed days of work.
  • About one in five adults do not know they may have high blood pressure.

Hypertension in India:

  • 22-25% of Indian population is affected by elevated blood pressure.
  • 33% of urban population and 17% of rural population in India are afflicted with hypertension.
  • 23% of men and 22% women in India are suffering from Hypertension.

Symptoms of hypertension

Symptoms of hypertension include a headache, shortness of breath, nose bleeds, dizziness and visual changes. A regular check-up of blood pressure is essential for maintaining cardiovascular health.

Causes of hypertension

There are two types of hypertension known as primary and secondary hypertension.

Causes of primary hypertension:

Genes, physical activity, and environmental changes may be responsible for primary hypertension. Primary hypertension is classified as essential hypertension because it is observed in most of the people.

Causes of secondary hypertension:

Secondary hypertension is the serious one. Several conditions like thyroid problems, irregular sleep patterns, smoking, stress, alcohol, and consumption of high sodium foods may lead to secondary hypertension.

Blaming dietary sodium for elevated blood pressure is overly simplistic; the true problem may be mineral deficiencies as well. Little amounts of potassium and calcium are also required for maintaining blood pressure.

Facts about Hypertension

  • Hypertension affects more men than women.
  • As one age, chances of getting hypertension are high.
  • Hypertension can affect your heart in many ways.
  • Hypertension results in thickening and hardening of arteries.
  • This can also result in less blood supply to the heart.
  • It puts the extra load on the heart and can also cause a heart attack.

Manage your hypertension with coconut water

Hypertension is considered the most prevalent form of cardiovascular diseases. In order to manage hypertension you to have to manage your blood flow mainly through exercise and diet. A healthy blood circulation prevents the risk of cardiovascular diseases. The key ingredient in managing your hypertension is coconut water. Go stress-free with coconut water. Coconut water is the juice present inside the interior cavity of tender coconut. Coconut water is plentiful in potassium and electrolytes and helps in maintaining blood pressure and cholesterol levels. It helps to keep you hydrated and supplies adequate nutrients like vitamins and minerals.

Health research publications revealed that coconut water lowered the systolic pressure up to 71%. The diastolic pressure was reduced up to 29% after consuming coconut water. Coconut water helps to balance water levels in your body and regain lost electrolytes. So it is used for balancing the electrolytes like sodium, potassium, chloride, and bicarbonates. Loss of water, which is commonly known as dehydration, may also lead to depletion of nutrients in the body. Delivering coconut water to such individuals will not only help to regain lost electrolytes but also help to maintain blood pressure.

Coconut water also helps to improve digestion. Drinking bottled or packed coconut water may also be beneficial if you do not want to manage the tender fruit. Make sure you select the best commercial pack of coconut water to ensure you get best of its nutrients in their true form. Coconut water is also known to resolve dyspepsia. Dyspepsia is a general term used to explain an upset stomach. Coconut water is abundant in lauric acid. Lauric acid helps to deal with dyspepsia. It also acts as an anti-microbial agent. If the stomach problem is due to the bacterial attack, frequent drinking of coconut water may be helpful.

Coconut water offers a fruitful source of potassium. Therefore, it also acts as a diuretic, meaning it helps to flush out excess salts and water from the kidneys, thereby reducing blood pressure.

However, please do not consume coconut water if you suffer from a kidney disease. It is worthier to ask your healthcare provider before making use of it.

Source

Nutrients in coconut water

Serial No.
Nutrients list
Amounts present in mg per coconut water pack
1.
Potassium
10%
2.
Magnesium
6%
3.
Dietary fibre
4%
4.
Vitamin C
4%
5.
Calcium
2%
6.
Iron
1%
7.
Protein
1%
8.
Saturated fat
1%
9.
Sugar
1%
Percentage of daily values may not be established. These values or statements have not been evaluated by FDA.
Source

Managing hypertension with onion and garlic

Onions constitute a substantial source of quercetin. Quercetin is a natural antioxidant. Both onion and garlic have a standard component known as adenosine, which is known for its muscle relaxing property. Hence, it enhances heart health. Garlic provides an excellent source of allicin, which helps to maintain healthy heart functioning, thereby regulating blood pressure.

Onion phytonutrients:

Onions constitute a substantial source of phytonutrients such as adenosine, prostaglandin A1, and Prostaglandin E.

A compound called adenosine helps as a smooth muscle relaxant. It helps to improve blood circulation, thereby keeping blood vessels safe.
Prostaglandins are hormone-like chemicals. They decide the switch on and switch off mechanisms of certain chemical substances in the body.
Thus, onions are very useful in the prevention of high blood pressure and stroke. However, if you are using blood thinners, statins or blood pressure medications make sure to consult your physician.

Garlic phytonutrients:

Garlic is a rich source of the phytonutrient called as allicin. Allicin improves your cardiovascular system in a significant way. It has been researched that allicin is known to prevent excessive clogging of blood cells.

It is said that 1-5 cloves of fresh garlic per day, eaten raw, provide enough allicin. Allicin is chiefly a sulfur-containing the compound. Allicin is chiefly a sulfur-containing the compound. Only the fresh raw garlic contains the significant amount of allicin. I will describe to you the reason why cooked garlic and garlic oil may have less allicin content.

Allicin is basically produced by an enzymatic reaction. It formed by the reaction of allinin on an action of an enzyme called as allinase. The enzyme is generally activated by heat, water or oxygen. When you heat the garlic, the enzymatic property is abandoned. That is why garlic should be eaten raw.

Managing hypertension with physical activity

Physical activity involves walking, jogging, running, skipping, workouts, push-ups, and other activities. Riding a bicycle may also help you.


Hypertension worldwide facts

References

References

Websites:

Journal publications:

Disclaimer: This article contains general information and does not offer any medical advice. The information shared in this article is not a substitute to professional medical advice and thus you may not solely be dependent on the above information and seek guidance from a medical practitioner.

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© 2018 Divya K

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