Even if your blood pressure is slightly high you still are at an increased risk for stroke
According to a new report released Wednesday online in Neurology, one in three American adults have pre-hypertension, those with blood pressure above normal. The report finds that those Americans had a 55% greater chance stroke in comparison to those with normal blood pressure.
Hypertension defined by blood pressure reading at 140 Hg or higher (systolic pressure, the top number in a reading and 90 Hg or higher (diastolic pressure, the bottom number).
A normal reading for blood pressure is usually 120/80 or less.
Introduced by the National Heart, Lung, Blood Institute come’s a new category called pre-hypertension listed in 2003. Pre-hypertension is when reading of systolic pressure of 120 to 139 and diastolic pressure of 80 to 89.
In this new study from University of California, San Diego had included 12 past studies with more than 518,000 participants in the United States and Asia. Participants had been tracked from a range of three to thirty-two years and the rate of pre-hypertension ranged from 25% to 46%. Even after researchers had taken into account other factors; such as age, diabetes, cholesterol, obesity, sex and smoking the link between pre-hypertension and stroke remained.
The study had also shown those under the age of sixty-five who had pre-hypertension had a 68% greater risk for stroke in comparison with to those with normal blood pressure.
For those who had the lower range of pre-hypertension of 120 to 129 were at 22% greater stroke risk in comparison to those with normal pressure. However, those who were at greater risk of 79% had pressure range of 130 to 139.
Pre-hypertension patients do not receive blood pressure drug therapy, exercise, diet, decreased salt intake and stop smoking is recommended. However, in cases of pre-hypertensive patients with other conditions like diabetes than drug therapy may be given.
Dr. Karen Furie, not part of this study and fellow of the American Academy of Neurology comments pre-hypertension is very likely to be a risk factor for stroke. It usually results in hypertension which could damage and weaken artery walls.
Dr. Furie in closing notes this study was of importance since it represents the structure of around a half million participants. The findings of the study do call for additional studies.
Varying factors such as dietary, alcohol consumption, sedentary lifestyle, insulin resistance and obesity which are all associated to stroke could not properly be addressed in this study.
The National High Blood Pressure Education Program recommends the following:
Lose any excess weight you may have. Past studies have demonstrated that for each ten pounds of weight lost is linked to an average drop of systolic blood pressure of up to around 10 millimeters of mercury.
Physical activity should be done at least for 30 minutes daily most days of the week. If you are not use to physical activity seek advice of your practitioner before starting any exercise regimen.
Eat healthy, make sure you intake low saturated fats and cholesterol. Eat foods rich in whole grains, have fruit and vegetables and include low-fat dairy foods.
Decrease salt intake of no more than one teaspoon daily.
Moderate alcohol consumption; two drinks daily for men and one for women.
One of the top exercises recommended is walking. In 2009, the School of Exercise and Nutritional Sciences at San Diego State University had noted from their study that health benefits can be received with sessions of exercise last ten minutes just may be a good starting point. When starting walking try to accumulate 1,000 steps in ten minutes and gradually build up to 3,000 steps in thirty minutes. Pedometers and wrist watch can be used but if you love your phone “Distance Meter” an iPhone app can track your walking with accuracy. The android app “Cardio Trainer Pro” also can track your walking, bicycling, running and other activities.
If you’re not into gadgets or watching your watch, you still can simply go for a daily walk and watch the colors of fall coming in.
Take a walk around Detroit:
Belle Isle Park
East Jefferson and East Grand Boulevard
Campus Martius Park
800 Woodward Avenue
2600 East Atwater