Understanding the impact of age on high blood pressure – By Dr harold Gunatillake
Understanding the impact of age on blood pressure is crucial for maintaining good health and preventing serious medical conditions. Learning about the changes
in blood pressure that occurs as we age, we can take proactive steps to manage our health and well-being.
Almost every adult will face this health problem as they get older. But knowing how blood pressure might change over a lifetime can give people a better appreciation of why it’s important to keep it in check at any age.
So, why does blood pressure change with age? Let’s explore the reasons behind this phenomenon and empower ourselves to make informed decisions about our health. and what should be done?
It’s perfectly natural for blood pressure to increase as we age. In fact, it’s an expected part of the ageing process. Don’t worry, this increase is normal and not necessarily a cause for concern, unless it reaches unhealthy ranges. Just be sure to maintain a healthy lifestyle and get regular check-ups from your doctor.
This video article will explain how such gradually increased vascular pressure can be minimized to safeguard against chronic diseases for good health and longevity.
Blood pressure is a vital sign that measures blood pressure against the walls of arteries. It is determined by systolic pressure (when the heart beats and pumps blood) and diastolic pressure (when the heart is at rest between beats). Blood pressure tends to increase with age due to the hardening and narrowing of arteries, which makes it difficult for blood to flow through them. This can lead to various health problems, such as heart disease, stroke, and kidney failure. Therefore, monitoring blood pressure regularly and taking necessary precautions to maintain it within a healthy range is crucial. Blood pressure is created in the heart by the contraction of the left ventricle for the distribution of oxygenated blood and dietetic breakdown products, including micronutrients and medications.
As mentioned earlier, the aorta is a big artery that leaves the heart carrying oxygenated blood and other nutrients. Branches off of the aorta send blood to the muscles of the heart itself, as well as all other parts of the body. Like a tree, the branches get smaller and smaller as they get farther from the aorta, and the minute capillaries convey such requirements for each cell in the body.
What is normal BP by age?
- Adolescent (14–18 years) 90–120 50–80
- Adult (19–40 years) 95–135 60–80
- Adult (41–60 years) 110–145 70–90
- Older adult (61 and older) 95–145 70–90
Today, for well-being and longevity, it is essential to maintain your systolic blood pressure between 120-130mmHg.
So, the importance of maintaining blood pressure within the normal range of 120/70-80 is essential to safeguard against high blood pressure, cardiovascular events, strokes, kidney disease, and peripheral atherosclerosis, among others. Now, let’s discuss how to prevent and maintain essential high blood pressure within the normal range. Let’s also discuss a situation where medication is being taken for high blood pressure. Still, it is not being held within the normal range, which is very common.
When your medical practitioner finds that you have early rising blood pressure, there are changes in lifestyle to reverse to a normal range without medication.
There are no early symptoms of high blood pressure, as in most other early-onset diseases. These symptoms in other diseases are referred to as prodromal symptoms. This is the danger of high blood pressure because the body gets used to working usually with high blood pressure until one day you feel dizzy or light-headed and next get a stroke.
So, frequently checking up on blood pressure is essential, with your machine at home or with the doctors.
Obesity alone can cause high blood pressure. Mind you, your heart has to pump hard against the hardening peripheral blood vessels to provide oxygenated blood and nutrients to the excessive fat cells, which we call adipocytes.
Starting on a plant-based low-fat and fat-and-carb diet, with an hour’s brisk walk daily, may suffice to reverse your high blood pressure without medication.
Walking tends to make your blood vessels more elastic and less resilient for blood pressure, and that alone can reduce the strain on your heart muscles.
Check your blood pressure immediately after a workout in the gym or a brisk walk for an hour; your systolic can even drop below 100mmgH. This is due to the temporary vaso-dilatation of the peripheral arteries. This applies to individuals who have been exercising for a long time.
As mentioned, blood pressure after exercise may increase from the optimal 120 upon 80 mm Hg. This is perfectly normal and usually nothing to worry about.
What’s important is how fast your blood pressure returns to its average resting level after physically exerting yourself. Longer recovery times can be linked to worse cardiovascular health. In some cases, it may even be a sign of a severe health concern like hypertension (high blood pressure) or heart disease, especially if it happens in younger people.
How else can you calm, relax and dilate a blood vessel to lower your blood pressure without medication?
Leafy green vegetables like spinach and collard greens high in nitrates are good vasodilators. Allicin, a chemical compound found in garlic, is clinically shown to promote blood flow by lowering blood pressure and relaxing the blood vessels. Allicin also helps prevent cancer by lowering blood pressure and cholesterol.
Beets are high in nitrates, which research suggests improves cardiovascular health in several ways. Some studies show beetroot juice supplementation may lower blood pressure and increase blood flow. It increases oxygen uptake, lengthening the time it takes to become fatigued, which allows people to stay active longer.
Drinking a cup of beetroot juice daily could significantly lower the blood pressure of people with high blood pressure, according to research we funded at Queen Mary University of London.
Can fish oil reduce high blood pressure?
Multiple studies report modest reductions in blood pressure in people who take fish oil supplements. There’s some evidence that the beneficial effects of fish oil might be more significant for people with moderate to severe high blood pressure than for those with mild blood pressure elevation.
So, you could lower your blood pressure during the early stages without medication but exercise daily, like a brisk walk, keep your weight down, and go on a vegetable- based diet with supplements.
Ginger tea has been found to improve blood flow as a natural vasodilator, widening blood vessels and enhancing blood flow. So, when selecting tea, opt for green and black varieties or ginger tea for an extra circulation boost.
How does alcohol affect your blood pressure? Drinking too much alcohol can raise blood pressure to unhealthy levels. Having more than three drinks in one sitting temporarily raises blood pressure. Repeated binge drinking can lead to long-term increases in blood pressure.
Consuming moderate amounts of alcohol may offer some health benefits. However, heavy drinking can hurt your mood and the function of your brain, heart, and other bodily systems.
If you have high blood pressure, avoid alcohol or drink alcohol only in moderation. For healthy adults, that means up to one drink daily for women and two for men.
A drink is 12 ounces (355 millilitres) of beer, 5 ounces (148 millilitres) of wine or 1.5 ounces (44 millilitres) of 80-proof distilled spirits.
Keep in mind that alcohol contains calories and may cause weight gain. Weight gain is a risk factor for high blood pressure. Alcohol may interact with certain blood pressure medications. It may affect the level of the medication in the body or increase side effects.
Does alcohol constrict or dilate?
“In addition to being a depressant, alcohol dilates the blood vessels. So if you’re standing at a party or social setting, blood will pool in the vessels in your feet instead of being pumped back to the heart and can lower your blood pressure temporarily.
So, viewers, I hope this video article was helpful. I had high blood pressure with asymptomatic coronary heart disease. But just walking 30,000 steps intermittently daily with a plant-based diet, I got rid of high blood pressure and coronary heart disease, and I take no medication at the age of 94.
So, let me be your role model. Please stay safe and goodbye until we meet again.
Long-term hypertension increases the risk of heart disease, heart attack, stroke, kidney disease, and vascular dementia.
The information contained in this article is for general information purposes only, and whilst the author will endeavour to keep the information up to date and correct, eLanka makes no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability or availability with respect to the eLanka website or the information, products, services, or related graphics contained in this article for any purpose. Any reliance you place on such information is therefore strictly at your own risk. In other words, eLanka In no event will we be liable for any loss or damage including without limitation, indirect or consequential loss or damage, or any loss or damage whatsoever arising from loss of data or profits arising out of, or in connection with, the use of this website / article. Also please note that through this website / web page articles you are able to link to other websites which are not under the control of eLanka and therefore we have no control over the nature, content and availability of those sites. The inclusion of any links does not necessarily imply a recommendation or endorse the views expressed within them.