High blood pressure (Hypertension):
The heart pumps blood around the body through the blood vessels.
Blood pressure is the amount of force exerted on the artery walls by
the pumping blood. High blood pressure (hypertension) means that
your blood is pumping with more force than normal through your arteries.
Hypertension is often treated as a disease; however it’s actually the correct
response for blood vessels affected by inflammation. When blood vessels
are exposed to prolonged vascular inflammation it leads to structural
changes and stiffening of these vessels and more force (pressure) is then
required to push the blood through.
Hypertension is linked to serious cardiovascular risks. It’s estimated that 66% of strokes and 50% of ischaemic heart disease cases are attributed to hypertension. Other common effects of hypertension include:
Impaired renal function: Over time hypertension can narrow and thicken the blood vessels of the kidneys causing reduced filtration and a build-up of metabolic wastes in the blood. Renal failure may also occur.
Impaired vision: High blood pressure can cause blood vessels in the eyes to burst or bleed causing blurred or impaired vision and/or blindness.
Hypertension usually does not produce any symptoms, because the organs of the body can resist high blood pressure for a long time. That’s why it’s important to have regular medical examinations to make sure your blood pressure isn’t creeping up as you grow older.
What is normal?
There are varying levels of blood pressure categories ranging from optimal blood pressure to severe hypertension as seen below.
What can cause hypertension?
Some of the factors which can contribute to high blood pressure include:
lack of exercise
a diet high in salt
The effects of high blood pressure on the arteries are worsened by:
high levels of saturated fat in the diet
high blood cholesterol
How NDH can help:
Two out of five people can successfully lower their blood pressure by making adjustments to their lifestyle, for which we can provide information and support. Supplementation can also be used if further assistance managing blood pressure is required.