Suresh Kumar Lau
World Health Day is celebrated every year on April 7 to mark the anniversary of the setting up World Health Organization (WHO) in 1948. The World Health Day is an annual event where WHO select a subject which has relevance globally.
Therefore WHO has recognised high blood pressure or what is called hypertension as priority area of global public health concern as the theme for the World Health Day 2013. Hypertension does not produce any visible symptom which could be linked to its presence. However, it continues to damage the important organs of the body, such as heart, kidneys, eyes, brain etc. slowly and silently. Therefore, it is rightly called The Silent Killer.
The heart contracts to pump the blood into circulation and relaxes to receive it from the circulation. Therefore, during the state of contraction of the heart, which is called systole, the blood pressure is more and this is called Systolic Blood Pressure (Upper limit). In the contrast to this the blood pressure is less during relaxation of the heart, the diastole and this is called Diastolic Blood Pressure (lower limit). Doctors generally write systolic and diastolic blood pressure readings separated by a bar or stroke for example systolic blood pressure of 140 mm Hg and diastolic blood pressure of 90 mm Hg is written as 140/90 mm Hg or 140/90 mm Hg. Blood Pressure (BP) measuring 120/80 mm Hg is considered normal and people with reading over 140/90 are considered hypertensive.
A astrologer reads the horoscope and narrates all about your life. A palmist looks at the palm and fortune by looking at the lines of his/her on palm. A physician is also in a proficient position to predict your health future by measuring blood pressure.
The different categories of high blood pressure are:
Sever high blood pressure- above 230 systolic and 130 diastolic.
High blood pressure – 170 systolic and 110 diastolic.
Moderately high blood pressure – 160 systolic and 95 diastolic.
Borderline blood pressure – 150 systolic and 90 diastolic.
According to WHO all regions of the world are affected by hypertension. A condition which affects more than one in three adult worldwide. About 639 million with hypertension live in developing countries. In Indian, hypertension has increase by 30 times in urban population over 25 years and by 10 times in rural population over 36 years.
In 95 per cent of people diagnosed with the disorder have primary or essential hypertension caused by genetic and environmental factors like a bed diet, stress and a sedentary lifestyle, the disorder is caused by secondary causes in 5 per cent of the people. Like renal artery stenosis or primary kidney disease, overweight, diet, high salt, stress, smoking, disorders of the hormonal glands and drugs like steroids.
High blood pressure is treatable through lifestyle. A conscious shift to healthy lifestyle, early detection and treatment are keys to keep blood pressure in check.
Physically active lifestyles benefit individuals throughout the lifespan. Appropriate physical activity can be fun and is good for all. Isotonic exercises like brisk walking, swimming and light jogging and highly beneficial it undertaken in moderation. Avoid isometric exercise like weightlifting. It tend to increase blood pressure. Pranayama is good for blood pressure as it ventilates the Lungs and causes relaxation. Scientific evidence has shown that regular physical activity:
Keep obesity, diabetes, cholesterol and blood pressure under control.
Enhance general well-being.
Beneficial in hypertension
Improves overall Physiological and psychological health.
Reducing salt intake not only lowers blood pressure levels. Also try to avoid processed foods, pickles, papads, wafers etc., as they are rich sources of salt. Eating less will help cut down body weight, will keep blood pressure down. Do no smoke. Even tobacco chowing is harmful.
Adhere to your Doctor’s advice
The secret of better control of high BP is taking your medications regularly, at around the same time of day, as advised by your doctor. It is advisable to record details of your blood pressure measurements periodically.
The simple modification in lifestyle with adherence to drug treatment prescribed by the doctor is highly effective if adopted earlier.