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HYPERTENSION Natural Methods to Manage Blood Pressure
Hypertension and its Effect on the Body Occurs when the force of blood pumping through the arteries is too high Two readings of 140/90 mm. Hg Linked to heart disease, stroke, diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, and dementia Asymptomatic in most cases and may go undetected for years Risk factors: genetics, diseases, older age, medications, diet, excess weight, and stress Treated with medications Produce side effects: dry mouth, headache, muscles aches Interact with other medications Natural alternatives to reduce blood pressure?
Specific Problems with Treating Hypertension in Senior Citizens Limited access and availability to treatment Specific health problems Less mobility More chronic diseases Increased chance of arterial calcification (Franklin, Jacobs, Wong, L'Italien, & Lapuerta, 2001). According to the American Heart Association (2012) out of the 1/3 of Americans have hypertension 58% were women over 65 53% of men over 65
Diet and Hypertension How can diet affect blood pressure? Reduces weight, lowers cholesterol, and increases metabolism. Supplies the body with required vitamins, minerals, and nourishment A healthy diet consists of: High intake of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein Decreased intake of processed foods, saturated and trans-fats, sodium, sugars, and consumption of alcohol and tobacco
Dietary Approaches to Stopping Hypertension: Why the DASH Diet? Reduces blood pressure in both research and clinical settings Complete lifestyle change Emphasizes fruits, vegetables, and low-fat dairy Includes whole grains, high fiber, and lean protein Reduces red meat, sweets and sugars Sodium is reduced to 1500 -2300 mg/day Maximizes nutrients such as potassium, magnesium, and calcium Balance of sodium, potassium, magnesium, and calcium helps to increase efficiency cellular metabolism
Stress and Hypertension Direct relationship with blood pressure Stimulates the sympathetic nervous system – AKA fight or flight response Taxing on the circulatory system when overstimulated Heart speeds up and the blood vessels constrict Heart rate and blood pressure increased Managing stress is important to help reduce blood pressure Meditation reduces stress By focusing the mind and body Slows breathing and heart rate
Mantra Meditation A mantra is a word or phrase that is repeated to oneself Examples: “Om” or “I am healthy” Recent research indicates that the use of a mantra increases relaxation, focus on a positive concept, and encourages self-awareness Mantra meditation can be performed by anyone, – including those with limited mobility How do I meditate using a mantra?