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Helping Prevent High Blood Pressure

By Stephen R. Farris

We should all strive for good health. This means watching and maintaining a healthy weight, eating the right nutritious foods, exercising on a regular basis, and keeping an eye on our blood pressure levels.

Unfortunately, high blood pressure, or hypertension as it is referred to often, can hit us when we least expect it. There's no one particular reason, as it could be from not doing a few of the above mentioned, or it could be from added unhealthy choices we make, such as drinking alcohol, smoking, or when we experience too much stress in our lives to name a few.

Good news is that there are ways to make sure your blood pressure stays as close to normal as possible, and if it is elevated, you may even be able to lower it to a much safer level.

Exercise

Even if you do have high blood pressure, it's still important to remain as active as possible. You don't have to go all out. Just do something that keeps you moving and that you like, such as walking for a few minutes each morning or afternoon, or taking a bike ride, and if you enjoy the water, then swim a few laps. 

Nutrition

Nutrition can play a big part in helping to keep your blood pressure in a good range. Try as much as possible to stay away from highly processed foods. Instead, you should include more fresh fruits and vegetables, leaner cuts of meat and whole grain foods. Cutting back on sugars and sodium can also have a positive impact on your blood pressure.

Caffeine

Although the effects are temporary, caffeine can elevate blood pressure. Drinks such as coffee and sodas have caffeine. Either can contain higher levels of caffeine compared to others. Try drinking more water instead. You can always add a little of your favorite fruit to give water more flavor if you don't like the taste.

Sleep

Getting a good night's sleep can be beneficial to your blood pressure, simply because it usually drops a little when you're sleeping. Not getting decent rest at night, especially when you're middle-aged or older, can put you at risk to higher blood pressure.

The bottom line is that we should all be taking better care of ourselves, including our blood pressure levels.

To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Scottsdale, Ariz.

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