Hello. This is Hypertension Prevention Tuesdays! Let’s talk about Blood Pressure Chart Readings. High blood pressure increases the risk for heart disease and stroke, two leading causes of death for Americans. High blood pressure is also very common. Tens of millions of adults in the United States have high blood pressure, and many do not have it under control. High blood pressure should be treated earlier with lifestyle changes and in some patients with medication – at 130/80 mm Hg rather than 140/90.
It’s important to manage your blood pressure:
- Hypertension, or blood pressure that’s too high, can put you at risk for heart disease, vision loss, kidney failure, and stroke.
- Hypotension, or blood pressure that’s too low, can cause serious side effects, such as dizziness or fainting. Severely low blood pressure can damage organs by depriving them of blood flow and oxygen.
High blood pressure or hypertension, usually has no symptoms and in many cases, is caught when the damage is already done. It is a chronic condition, which must be managed on a daily basis throughout your life. The only way to know if you have it is to get your blood pressure measured. You need to know your blood pressure ranges, what is healthy for you, and learn ways to avoid high blood pressure, as well as low blood pressure. Talk with your health care team about how you can manage your blood pressure and lower your risk.
A high blood pressure chart is a tool that can show you high and low blood pressure ranges. If you have never bothered about charts for blood pressure, perhaps it is time you did. Ultimately, high blood pressure should be avoided for better health.
How to Read a Blood Pressure Chart
On a blood pressure chart, readings will be categorized into normal, elevated, stage 1 and 2, and hypertensive crisis. The chart can act as a guide to help people change their lifestyle.
Systolic blood pressure is the top number in a reading. It measures the pressure on blood vessels as your heart squeezes blood out to your body.
- Normal: Below 120
- Elevated: 120-129
- Stage 1 high blood pressure (also called hypertension): 130-139
- Stage 2 hypertension: 140 or more
- Hypertensive crisis: 180 or more. Call 911.
Diastolic blood pressure is the bottom number in a reading. It measures the pressure on blood vessels in between heart beats, while your heart fills up with blood returning from your body.
This is what your diastolic blood pressure number means:
- Normal: Lower than 80
- Stage 1 hypertension: 80-89
- Stage 2 hypertension: 90 or more
- Hypertensive crisis: 120 or more. Call 911.
The chart below has more details.
Even if your diastolic number is normal (lower than 80), you can have elevated blood pressure if the systolic reading is 120-129.
Where can I get my blood pressure checked?
You can get your blood pressure measured:
- By a health care team member at a doctor’s office.
- At a pharmacy that has a digital blood pressure measurement machine.
- With a home blood pressure monitor that you can use yourself.
How can I measure my blood pressure at home?
A good way to manage your blood pressure is to take your own blood pressure readings at home using a blood pressure monitor. You can record your reading on a blog pressure chart or log. It can show what your levels of blood pressure are, which can help you manage your condition.
Talk with your health care team about regularly measuring your blood pressure at home, also called self-measured blood pressure (SMBP) monitoring.
SMBP means you regularly use a personal blood pressure measurement device away from a doctor’s office or hospital—usually at home. These blood pressure monitors are easy and safe to use. A health care team member can show you how to use one if you need help.
Evidence shows that people with high blood pressure are more likely to lower their blood pressure if they use SMBP combined with support from their health care team than if they don’t use SMBP.
Learn about the proper way to measure your blood pressure and things that can affect your blood pressure reading.
How often should I measure my blood pressure?
Talk with your health care team about how often you should have your blood pressure measured or when to measure it yourself. People who have high blood pressure may need to measure their blood pressure more often than people who do not have high blood pressure.
What should I do if my blood pressure numbers are high?
If you are concerned about your blood pressure numbers, talk to your health care team. They can help you make a plan to manage high blood pressure.
No matter your age, you also can take steps each day to help keep your blood pressure in a healthy range.
People’s blood pressure is partially due to factors they cannot control, such as:
- family history
- chronic kidney disease
However, there are also many steps a person can take to prevent high blood pressure. These include:
- eating a healthful diet that includes fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and complex carbohydrates
- exercising regularly, particularly cardio workouts, such as walking, cycling, or running
- not smoking
- limiting alcohol consumption
- restricting consumption of processed foods
- limiting sodium intake to less than 2 grams daily
- treating sleep apnea
- managing and regulating diabetes
- reducing weight if overweight
- taking steps to reduce stress
Adopting a healthy lifestyle is the best way to control blood pressure. For those who are hypertensive, there are medications available. Most people, especially those with severe cases, will need medication for the rest of their lives. It is also important to make regular visits to your doctor.
If you would like to receive a free resource sheet to support your quest for better heart health, click the button below to receive your gift.
I’m excited to talk about this topic today because not only do I truly believe that you have the power to reverse heart disease and lower high blood pressure to improve your health, but the science also agrees! You can adopt healthy lifestyle practices that improve your health and enrich your life, which can in turn improve the lives of those close to you. You have the power to break the cycle of these chronic diseases so that you can leave a legacy of health to your loved ones.
As you may already know, I use lifestyle medicine as the first line of treatment, before medications, to treat lifestyle-related chronic diseases. Lifestyle-related chronic diseases include diabetes, hypertension, obesity, and some cancers, just to name a few. Lifestyle practices, such as eating a whole-food plant-based diet and regular physical activity, can help you improve blood pressure and reverse heart disease. In certain cases, these approaches may even outperform pharmaceutical therapy. But I always tell my patients that conventional medications may be appropriate at this time to prevent catastrophic illness, but over time, you can work to make the necessary lifestyle changes to possibly reduce and/or eliminate medications. Please remember to always consult your physician for your particular needs and circumstances prior to making any decisions whatsoever.
Is Dietary Supplementation Right For You?
There is a common saying, “You can’t outrun a bad diet.” This is especially true when it comes to heart health. Diet is sooooo very important… Did you know that your diet could be the key to a healthy heart? It’s true – what you eat (and don’t eat) can have a big impact on your cardiovascular health. So, if you’re looking to keep your heart in tip-top shape, make sure you pay attention to what you put on your plate.
Unfortunately, it can be difficult to eat a healthy diet in this day and age. It is very important to note that we are not eating the same foods we ate years ago because the soils have been depleted of critical nutrients through current industrial farming practices. And because the soil is not as good as it used to be, the food supply (grown from the depleted soil) is not as good as it used to be. For example, you are not getting the same levels of magnesium as you would have gotten 30 or even 50 years ago.
Second, much of the food has been genetically altered, which can impact the inherent and unique nutritional composition that each food possess. For example, ancient einkorn wheat has less gluten, more protein, more Vitamin A, and more beta carotene, than modern genetically modified wheat.
Third, the toxic load in the environment today is much higher than 100 years ago. We can see this with global warming, toxic landfills, polluted oceans and waterways, etc. Toxicity levels interfere with nutrient assimilation and absorption not just into the foods, but into our bodies as well.
If you suspect that you aren’t getting the nutrients you need, consider shifting your focus from supplements to eating better. Improving your diet overall can do wonders for your overall health. You may not get all of the beneficial nutrients, such as vitamins, minerals, fiber, etc., but you will be on the right path.
For some people, vitamin and mineral supplements offer important health benefits. Supplements are designed to fight deficiencies found in our diet and complement the food we eat regularly. Supplements are basically “helping hands” to our daily food.
If you need extra help in getting the nutrients you need, and/or are unable to eat better, the supplements in my Healthy Heart Bundle may provide the extra boost you need.
These are my favorite Heart Health Supplements to use! This Healthy Heart Bundle will ensure you have the intake of the important vitamins, minerals, and probiotics to decrease inflammation and boost your innate wellness day and night. Taken together, it’s a solid plan for increasing your body’s natural resiliency while you lose weight and improve your heart health, naturally.
For best results make sure you use my heart health supplements with dietary changes including a whole food plant-based diet, regular exercise (at least 2-3x per week), regular sleep (8 hours per night), and intermittent fasting (at least 1-3x per week).
Tools to Improve Heart Health
Blood Pressure Monitoring
Since weight management is very important in blood pressure control, I recommend that you be mindful of your weight and its fluctuations, and that you monitor your weight AT LEAST on a weekly basis. I recommend a scale that includes a body composition monitor.
Want To Know More About Your Heart Health?
Heart health is a big topic. It’s in the news, on our minds, and for good reason; heart disease remains the leading cause of death in the U.S. But what if there was something you could do proactively to help protect your heart from future problems? Enter the CardiaX test—a revolutionary new way to take charge of your heart health!
What is CardiaX?
CardiaX is a comprehensive genetic testing panel that looks at mutations associated with common cardiovascular risks. It can be used to determine if there are any genetic factors at play in your heart health, and it can also identify potential areas of risk that may require further action. With this knowledge, you can make informed choices about your health today with the aim of improving long-term heart health outcomes.
Who Might Benefit from CardiaX?
If you have been diagnosed with or are at risk for atherosclerosis, abnormal cholesterol production, hypertension, stroke risk, and risk for heart attack then you may benefit from this test. Additionally, anyone who wants to know more about their genetic predispositions for common cardiovascular risks may also want to consider taking this test as well.
What Can I Do With My Results?
Your results will give you an indication of whether or not there are any potential genetic markers playing a role in your risk for developing certain conditions related to heart health. From there, you can work with your healthcare provider to develop a plan that takes into account these findings and helps you develop strategies for managing them going forward. In addition to lifestyle changes such as diet and exercise modification, selecting medications that are tailored specifically to your genetics could be beneficial as well.
In A Nutshell…
The CardiaX test is an exciting new way to take charge of your heart health by learning more about how genetics might be playing a role in certain cardiovascular risks. With this knowledge in hand, patients can make decisions informed by their own unique genetic profile that will help reduce their overall risk for developing certain conditions associated with heart disease. This type of proactive approach is key when it comes to protecting ourselves against this all-too-common affliction—so don’t wait another minute! Take control of your future and get started with the CardiaX test today!
Remember, healthy lifestyle behaviors–like eating a whole-foods plant-based diet that is low in sodium, being physically active, and stress management are the best ways to prevent and control high blood pressure. Please talk with your doctor about any complementary health approaches, including supplements, you use.
Let me know what you think in the comment section below.
PS. I am always asked what tools and resources I recommend to help you reach YOUR health goals. Here is the ever-growing, always updated list for you.
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