Summer is a time for travels with the family and fun-filled activities under the sun. However, it is also the season for high blood pressure or hypertension problems.
Because hypertension has no symptoms, the proper way to know if you have hypertension is to have your blood pressure checked by your health professional or doctor. Normal blood pressure means that your systolic pressure is under 120 and your diastolic pressure is under 80.
If you have been diagnosed to have hypertension, here are some tips on how to prevent those blood pressure spikes during summer.
1. Eat a healthy summer diet
Limit your sodium or salt intake through your food and drinks and instead, increase potassium intake by eating fruits and vegetables that are rich in this mineral. This summer, feast on some foods rich in potassium such as bananas, oranges, potatoes, sweet potatoes (camote), eggplants and green, leafy vegetables.
2. Avoid super hot places
Avoid going outdoors in the midday sun. When shopping, go to air-conditioned malls and stores. Avoid hot, stuffy, crowded places where there is poor ventilation.
3. Exercise and maintain a healthy weight
This summer, try getting some moderate-intensity exercises for two to three hours a week, or high-intensity workouts for an hour every week. Walking and jogging during early morning or late afternoon, when the summer heat has subsided, are aerobic forms of exercise that can increase your heart rate and improve your body’s oxygenation.
Summer may be time for fiestas and celebrations, but gaining weight can increase your risk of having high blood pressure. Try to maintain a healthy weight so that you can decrease your risk for other health problems like heart disease and stroke and keep your blood pressure under control.
4. Avoid smoking and alcohol
Summer is the time for partying with friends, but you should avoid the temptation to smoke and drink too much alcohol. Smoking can increase your blood pressure and can make you at greater risk for heart attacks and stroke. If you smoke, it’s better to quit now.
Too much alcohol can also increase your blood pressure. Alcohol contains more calories which can lead to weight gain. Males should not have more than two drinks a day and women should only have one.
5. Manage stress
While having your summer vacation, find many ways to relax and unwind. This can help you improve your health and wellbeing and can also lower hypertension. This summer, you can try various stress management techniques such as listening to music, meditation, yoga, and other calming exercises.
How to Prevent High Blood Pressure: MedlinePlus. (2019). Retrieved from https://medlineplus.gov/howtopreventhighbloodpressure.html
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