Lowering Blood Pressure

Canadian experts agree that keeping your blood pressure at target helps lower your risk of heart attack and stroke. Read on for expert advice on lifestyle changes you can make to help lower your blood pressure.

What’s my blood pressure target?

Experts agree that all people need to have a blood pressure lower than 140/90 mmHg or “140 over 90”. What this means is that:
  • Your top number or systolic blood pressure should be lower than 140 mmHg
AND
  • Your bottom number (diastolic blood pressure) should be lower than 90 mmHg
 
In people with diabetes and chronic kidney disease, the experts recommend a blood pressure lower than 130/80 mmHg.
 

Do I need blood pressure medication?

Blood pressure experts recommend lifestyle changes to be one of the most important treatments for high blood pressure. These changes can not only have a major impact on high blood pressure but can also help to lower your risk of a heart attack or stroke.
 
If you don’t lower your blood pressure enough with the lifestyle changes, experts recommend that doctors add medication to your good lifestyle to lower your risk of a heart attack or stroke.

 
 

Weight loss

Experts recommend:
Try to maintain a healthy weight. Pay special attention to your waist size because extra stomach fat really increases your risk of heart disease.
 
Why?
For every 10 pounds of weight loss your blood pressure will drop by:
  • 7.2 mmHg off the top number
  • 5.9 mmHg off the bottom number

 
 

Healthy diet

Experts recommend:
Choose a diet high in fresh fruits, vegetables, dietary fibre, non-animal protein (e.g. soy) and low-fat dairy products. It should be low in saturated fat and cholesterol.
 
Why?
This diet can have a major impact on blood pressure and can drop it by:
  • 11.4 mmHg off the top number
  • 5.5 mmHg off the bottom number

 
 

Being physically active

Experts recommend:
30-60 minutes of moderate exercise on 4 to 7 days per week.
 
Why?
It can lower your blood pressure by:
  • 4.9 mmHg off the top number
  • 3.7 mmHg off the bottom number

 
 

Moderate alcohol intake

Experts recommend:
Limit your alcohol to a maximum of 2 drinks per day. Men should have less than 14 drinks per week and women should have less than 9 drinks per week.
 
Why?
It can lower your blood pressure by:
  • 3.9 mmHg off the top number
  • 2.4 mmHg off the bottom number

 
 

Lowering your stress

Experts recommend:
Relaxation techniques.
 
Why?
It can lower your blood pressure by:
  • 6.1 mmHg off the top number
  • 4.3 mmHg off the bottom number

 
 

Reducing your salt

Experts recommend:
The older we become, the lower the amount of sodium (salt) we should eat in our diets.
  • People aged 19-50 years should eat less than 1500 mg of sodium per day
  • People aged 51-70 years should eat less than 1300 mg of sodium per day
  • People aged 71 and over should eat less than 1200 mg of sodium per day
 
Why?
If you lower your sodium intake to fewer than 1800 mg per day:
  • Your top number (systolic blood pressure) will drop by 5.1 mmHg
  • Your bottom number (diastolic blood pressure) will drop by 2.7 mmHg
 

Lower salt tips

  • Try to buy fresh foods (fruits, vegetables, meats)
  • Read your nutrition facts labels and pick a lower sodium product
  • Avoid:
    • Pickled foods
    • Sauces
    • Processed meats
    • Convenience foods (for example TV dinner foods)
    • Soups
  • Avoid the salt shaker
  • Watch your portion sizes. Smaller means less sodium.
  • Try to cook your meals from scratch because you can control the amount of salt
  • Use fresh or frozen vegetables if possible
  • When eating at a restaurant, ask the waiter about low-salt options
  • Avoid these when eating out:
    • Hamburgers
    • Hotdogs
    • Pizza
    • Sandwiches
    • Subs

 
 

Important information

Want to learn more about this topc? Click here for further information.
 
Content powered by:
cid:07FDAB5F-443C-4DBF-916D-CF358DD151E6
 
Healthy rewards for a healthier you
Participate in personalized wellness
programs for rewards at
BestLifeRewarded.com
 
Copy content included in this article is © BestLifeRewarded, 2014
 
 
This information should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your doctor. There may be variations in treatment that your physician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances. If you have questions about your symptoms, ask the Pharmacist at Walmart for more information, and/or contact your doctor.
 
 
Legal
This article is intended as general information. Always be sure to read and follow the label(s)/instruction(s) that accompany your product(s). Walmart will not be responsible for any injury or damage caused by this activity.

:

Phone:

Store details