Stressed? Over worked? Or have a family a predisposition to Cardio-vascular disease? If yes, then a Blood pressure check is essential.

Elevated Blood Pressure – The Silent Killer

Did you know that high blood pressure is believed to contribute three-quarters of all strokes and heart attacks? That’s a huge risk factor, but despite being such as serious health condition most people with high blood pressure will not have any symptoms.

Even if their blood pressure readings reach dangerously high levels, they may have no idea. That’s why high blood pressure is called a ‘silent killer’.

Understanding Your Blood Pressure Reading

Have you had a blood pressure reading in the last 12 months? Do you know what your blood pressure reading was? Do you know what it means?

Here is a basic guide to blood pressure readings:

  • Blood pressure readings give you two numbers, such as 120mmHg/80mmHg (read as “120 over 80”). The top number is called the systolic pressure, and the lower number is called the diastolic pressure.
  • The ‘mmHg’ stands for millimetres of mercury.
  • An optimum blood pressure is a reading with the top number less than 120 and the bottom number less than 80. So “120/80” is nice and healthy.
  • Elevated (high) blood pressure is also known as ‘hypertension’.
  • Elevated blood pressure or hypertension is defined as when the top number is over 140 and the bottom number is over 90.

Blood Pressure Checks

A blood pressure check is very simple and completely painless, and takes just one minute. Vital Chi’s naturopaths check blood pressure at every initial patient consultation.

Managing blood pressure is just one part of a holistic health program that a naturopath can tailor for you. If you’d like an appointment, simply contact Vital Chi today.

Risk Factors for High Blood Pressure

There are many factors that contribute to the risk of elevated blood pressure or hypertension. Some of these may be out of your control, while others are related to lifestyle factors or medications.

Hypertension risk factors – associated with lifestyle or medications

  • Obesity
  • Stress
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • Smoking
  • Chronic heavy alcohol use
  • Heavy coffee drinking (five cups or more per day)
  • Prolonged use of Glycyrrhiza glabra (licorice)
  • Use of oral contraceptives
  • Hormone replacement therapy
  • Long term use of NSAIDs
  • Taking medications containing pseudoephedrine
  • Food sensitivities
  • Low fibre intake
  • High sodium intake
  • High carbohydrate intake
  • Cadmium and/or lead toxicity
  • Toxic chemical exposure
  • Use of cocaine

Risk factors – less ability to control

  • Family history of hypertension
  • Existing cardiovascular disease
  • Insulin resistance
  • Male gender
  • Age over 55
  • Low birth weight
  • Renal disease
  • Certain endocrine conditions (e.g., Diabetes, Cushing’s syndrome)
  • Obstructive sleep apnoea
  • Mood disorders, particularly depression, anxiety and repressed anger

Symptoms of High Blood Pressure and Hypertension

Most people with high blood pressure have no symptoms, even if blood pressure readings reach dangerously high levels. However a few people with high blood pressure may experience symptoms such as headaches, dizziness, nosebleeds, tinnitus, confusion, tiredness, anxiety, increased perspiration or florid skin complexion.

When Did You Last Have Your Blood Pressure Checked?

People with hypertension are four times more likely to have a ‘major cardiovascular event’ (such as heart failure). Don’t let this ‘silent killer’ sneak up on you. Book a Naturopathic Consult with Vital Chi today. If you want to find out more, we are just a phone call away on (03) 9894 0014, or simply send us an email . You can also read more about Naturopathy here.

How Can Vital Chi Help if I have High Blood Pressure?

Vital Chi’s experienced, professional naturopaths can help you lower your blood pressure naturally and safely, without resorting to pharmaceutical drugs. If you are currently on blood pressure medication, we can also help you to decrease or eliminate your dependency on the medication. This includes working in with medical experts to ensure a safe and effective treatment plan.

Hypertension is often associated with other health issues. Many of our patients who have high blood pressure or hypertension find naturopathy to be an excellent way to address several health issues in a holistic and natural way. Our focus is on treating the ‘whole person’ and the addressing the causes of your hypertension (not simply prescribing medication).

We can certainly help you find a way to take a more ‘balanced’ approach to your overall health and lifestyle, and lower your blood pressure with a treatment plan tailored to fit your lifestyle and priorities.

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