High blood pressure (hypertension) is one of the most common diseases affecting the western world. High blood pressure is usually symptomless whilst slowly damaging the eyes, brain, and kidneys. Many governments have initiated policies to raise public awareness. The aim of this article is to give the person suffering (or who may be suffering) hypertension some knowledge about the condition enabling them to make objective decisions regarding their treatment.
High blood pressure appears not to have a clear-cut cause. It is more common in people who smoke, drink excessive alcohol, are overweight, and are sedentary. However, non-smoking teetotal athletes can suffer from hypertension. Certain ethnic groups have a very high incidence of high blood pressure, with research not revealing any reasons for this.
Drugs (Pharmaceuticals) To Treat High Blood Pressure
ACE (Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme) Inhibitirs: enalapril maleate, captopril, quinapril, lisinopril, amongst others.
Function: to block an enzyme in the bloodstream that produces angiotensin II, a chemical that raises blood pressure by constricting blood vessels.
Side effects: long-term cough, acute swelling of face, lips, and throat.
Angiotensin II Blockers: candesartan, irbesartan, losartan potassium, valasartan.
Function: to block the effect of angiotensin.
Side effects: are rare.
Alpha Blockers: clonidine, prasozin, doxazosin, terazosin.
Function: to chemically block responses to stressors that causeraised blood pressure and heart rate.
Side effects: dry mouth, dizziness, fatigue, nausea, impaired sexual function. Alpha blockers can precipitate dramatic increase in blood pressure treatment if suddenly discontinued.
Beta Blockers: propranolol, betaxolol, carvedilol, atenolol, metoprolol, labetolol.
Function: to block chemical processes that lead to increased heart pressure and heart rate. Often given after a heart attack.
Side effects: tiredness, excessively slow heart rate, impaired sexual functioning. Beta blockers can precipitate dramatic increase in blood pressure if suddenly discontinued.
Calcium-Channel Blockers: amolodipine besylate, diltiazem, verapamil, nifedipine.
Function: to relax blood vessel walls to make them dilate (expand), lowering blood pressure.
Side effects: are constipation, dizziness, nausea, fluid retention.
Diuretics: bendrofluazide, bumetanide, cyclopenthiazide, frusemide, hydrochlorothiazide, indapamide, metolazone, mefruside.
Function: is to stimulate kidneys to excrete more salt and water, lowering blood volume and blood pressure.
Side effects: are low levels of potassium and magnesium, elevations in uric acid, increases in blood cholesterol.
Hypertension Friendly Lifestyle
Hypertension has been shown to be related to many causes. So a change in lifestyle, other than one single thing, often helps someone lower their blood pressure. Three things that research throws up again and again is that people who drink to excess, smoke and are overweight are at a much higher risk of developing high blood pressure. If you eat fewer calories yo will soon start to lose weight, just don’t expect to be as thin as Lance Armstrong in two weeks! For the heavy drinker cutting down on alcohol consumption can have many benefits, it will help lower your blood pressure, it will help you lose weight, and it will save you a fortune. Smoking has, for many decades, been known to be generally bad for health. The reason it raises blood pressure is that it causes a constriction (narrowing) of the arteries. If you really can’t stop smoking, at least cut down. Research indicates that eating ’empty’ calories (refined carbohydrates, sugar, sugary drinks,’junk’ food) can be a cause of high blood pressure and contribute to being overweight. Try eating high-fiber foods such as whole grains and raw vegetables. Fibre makes you feel full, so in turn you may actually eat less and lose weight. Eating deep-sea (cold water) fish rich in essential fatty acids (EFA’s) such as mackerel, cod tuna, and salmon have been shown to help with blood pressure. It is thought that the omega-3 fatty acid in these relax artery walls and make blood thinner. Eat foods rich in magnesium, potassium, and calcium such as nuts and seeds, green leafy vegetables, whole grains, legumes, amongst others. One area that every professional agrees upon is that engaging in regular aerobic exercise for 30 minutes 3 times per week will help lower blood pressure.
Natural Remedies To Treat High Blood Pressure
Dandelion: Taraxacum officinale: is a popular remedy for fluid retention. By increasing urine flow dandelion also helps lower blood pressure. Dandelion benefits from not causing potassium loss, which pharmaceutical diuretics usually do. Make sure that if you use dandelion leaves that they have not been treated with pesticides.
Garlic: Allium sativum: has been used for 1,000’s of years for many conditions. To get the best from garlic, 3 cloves should be eaten raw everyday. The same effect can be achieved by taking garlic gel capsules.
Reishi: Ganoderma lucidum: is a mushroom. Scientific studies have shown that reishi lowers blood pressure. The mushroom itself is nearly inedible and is usually taken in capsule form.
Hawthorn: Crataegus spp: lowers blood pressure by relaxing and dilating artery walls. Hawthorn can take many weeks or months to show any effect.
Hypercet: is a proprietary blend of many natural ingredients including the following active ingredients. Calcium A recent article by Christopher Ott describes the many ways calcium protects your health, including the role it plays in protecting your heart.
Gene Spiller, PhD, the Director of the Health Research and Studies Center says, “In fact, your calcium intake may be almost as important to blood pressure as your sodium intake,” He is co-author of Calcium: Nature’s Versatile Mineral (Avery, 2000)
Spiller also said, “An adequate supply of calcium helps muscles-including your heart muscle-do their work of contracting and relaxing. Calcium also appears to help your nervous system regulate the level of pressure in your arteries.”
Calcium is a naturally occurring mineral with no known side effects.
Magnesium is the fourth most abundant mineral in the body, and is essential to good health.
A diet high in green leafy vegetables such as spinach, whole grains, nuts, and some legumes supplies magnesium. Tap water can be a good source, if the water is “hard.” “Soft” water contains fewer minerals.
Magnesium is a naturally occurring mineral with no known side effects
“An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” There’s more truth in that old saying than you might think. Malic acid is derived from tart apples and grapes, and is an essential part of the magnesium support team.
Malic acid is an important part of the Krebs cycle, a series of chemical reactions carried out in the living cell, and is used by the body to increase ATP, an enzyme that supports muscle health, reduces muscle stress, and assists to improve energy levels in the body. Malic Acid is a naturally occurring substance with no known side effects.
Citric acid, although acid in its fresh form (lemon and limes) transforms during metabolism into alkali. This is helpful to your blood. Our American diet tends to be overly acidic from coffee, sodas, alcohol, and certain proteins. An acidic condition tends to be more inflammatory. Citric acid is essential to the Krebs cycle, Citric acid, together with malic acid, are involved with complex chemical actions, resulting in the production of carbon dioxide, and its removal from the cells. Citric acid is also used as a natural preservative to maintain freshness of many products, and serves this role, as well, in the Hypercet BPF. Citric Acid is a naturally occurring substance with no known side effects.
Glycine is a non-essential amino acid found naturally in beans, brewer’s yeast, dairy products, meat, seafood, nuts and whole grains. It’s involved in the production of glucose in the liver. Glycine is plays an important role in supporting healthy blood in your body. It is involved in the manufacture of nitrogen to process many other amino acids, and usefulin the processing of hemoglobin, glutathione, DNA, and RNA. It helps with brain function, and is important for a healthy prostate gland. Glycine is a naturally occurring substance with no known side effects.
It has been shown that there can be many causes of high blood pressure, not just one. Treatment is similar in that a lifestyle switch is usually better than a pharmaceutical cure. For the non-smoking, teetotal athlete who suffers hypertension the pharmaceutical may be the only way left open. For the rest of us who may be a little overweight, drink a little too much (I include myself in this group!), or smoke, have options available.
Take some natural remedies, take a little more exercise, eat a little healthier, cut back on the cigarettes, and cut back on the booze. Try to change one thing at a time, within a few months your lifestyle could be dramatically more blood pressure friendly.
The reader who suffers with high blood pressure should now have some more knowledge about their condition and the different therapies available to them, enabling them to make objective choices in their own treatment.