Find Out What Your Blood Pressure Means
It has now become easily accessible to get a measurement of your blood pressure, whether it’s with your doctor, the pharmacy or even some of your local grocery stores. We’ve all heard that a blood pressure reading of 120/80 is considered normal, but do you actually know what that means?
WHAT IS BLOOD PRESSURE?
This is the pressure of the blood that circulates through your cardiovascular system (your heart and blood vessels). This pressure is dictated by the force and rate that the heart beats as well as the elasticity of the artery walls.
WHAT IS A HEALTHY BLOOD PRESSURE?
The standard for normal, healthy blood pressure is a measurement of 120/80. The top number (120) is the systolic pressure. This represents the peak pressure your blood exerts against arterial walls whenever your heart beats. In simpler terms, this is the pressure required to push blood through your arteries and throughout your body. The bottom number (80) is your diastolic pressure. This represents the pressure against your artery walls while your heart is at rest in between beats. In simpler terms, this is the pressure on the walls when the heart is not pushing blood into the system. So what does all this mean? In general, blood pressure is the measurement of the health of your heart, your arteries and the whole cardiovascular system. Deviating away from normal makes an individual at higher risk for more serious cardiovascular diseases if it persists.
When your blood pressure starts to rise, this usually means that the blood vessels and the heart are overworked as they attempt to deliver blood throughout your body. What’s important is that people can have drastic changes in their blood pressure without them feeling anything at all (which is similar to changes in your nervous system). Most people find out about it when they get measured for it, so it’s important to get your blood pressure checked! It is also not accurate to rely on just one reading of your blood pressure, as your blood pressure can fluctuate depending on your situation. Blood pressure can temporarily fluctuate based on your level of stress, what you eat or drink, or with physical activity. It’s always good to regularly check your blood pressure to see if it is a chronic issue, and of course talk to your doctor about it as well.
Your Mississauga Chiropractors are concerned about your overall health and well-being, and that includes the health of your heart and cardiovascular system. So they want to make sure that you are maintaining a healthy blood pressure so that your arteries can remain elastic and free-flowing with blood without any interference. Here are a few tips in order to maintain a healthy blood pressure:
-EXERCISE – any exercise is beneficial to your cardiovascular system, even walking, yoga, weightlifting, cycling, swimming, team sports… ANYTHING! The regular recommendation to maintain a healthy heart is at least 30 minutes of daily physical activity for adults aged 18-64. For the best benefits, make sure to monitor your breathing and your pulse rate, making sure you’re stressing our your body too much during activity.
-DIET – Potassium and Magnesium have shown to be beneficial towards maintaining a healthy heart. These are found in a lot of veggies and fruits. You want to avoid EXCESS SALT as this is shown to increase blood pressure by retaining excess water and depleting potassium stores.
-AVOID TOBACCO – Although it is generally accepted that tobacco has NO health benefits whatsoever, it especially has a huge negative effect on the function or your heart and the integrity of your blood vessels, thus increasing your blood pressure.
-STRESS MANAGEMENT – Most people exhibit a higher blood pressure in stressful situations, and can become chronic in a regularly stressful environment. This increase is a natural response from your body to combat stressful situations, but is only supposed to be TEMPORARY. It’s important to take time to relax and manage you stress (which will vary from person to person). Find what helps you relax, even if that includes exercise! Whatever it is, do it more often, so that your body doesn’t have to adapt to your everyday stresses.
-GET ADJUSTED! – A study in 2008 showed that chiropractic adjustments can help reduce blood pressure. It was shown that increases in blood pressure were caused by misalignments in the very top segment of your spine called the ATLAS. When this vertebrae is subluxated, it has a direct effect on the brainstem, and directly affects its ability to regulate your blood pressure. Not only do people find chiropractic adjustments relaxing for the body, but it helps reduce the tension and interference that comes with a misaligned spine.
Your Mississauga Chiropractors are equipped to help you progress to a healthier lifestyle, especially when it comes to adjusting your spine to allow proper function of your nervous system. Your Chiropractor also have the tools necessary to measure the stress that has accumulated in your body. If you’d like to receive a health check from one of our Chiropractors, do not hesitate to contact us at (905)821-4951