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- Wed Feb 13, 2008 9:28 am
I am 6'1", 189 pounds, 38 years old. I recently (2 months ago) started an exercise regimen as I was getting a little extra in the abdomen area. During this process I bought a blood pressure meter (electronic). I have followed all instructions for sitting for 15 minutes before reading, etc. It seems, after 1 week of readings, that my systolic pressue averages below 120mmHg about 118mmHg. However, my diastolic is averaging about 91mmHg. Pulse averages 79, at rest. Do I need to be concerned? I have fall allergies right now and I am taking Zyrtec is my only medical condition.
I eat a ton of extra salt with my food (salt my food heavily), and have stopped that in the past couple of days to see if I can get diastolic down, not sure how long it takes though.
Thanks for your help.
| Debbie Miller, RN
- Thu Feb 28, 2008 9:18 am
Congratulations on your decision to take charge of your health.
First of all I would encourage you to follow the directions on your monitoring device to a "T" to be sure you are getting accurate readings. Secondly, take your blood pressure at least twice a day to get a good overall average score.
As you probably know, 90 for diastolic is borderline high so measures to reduce it such as you are doing with salt intake reduction is good. You can also benefit by increasing the amounts of calcium and potassium rich foods (fruits, fish and oats are good here). Avoid eating saturated fats. Don't eat "hydrogenated" anything or trans fat (TFA). Avoid caffeine, get sufficient rest without oversleeping. Regular exercise is also good and losing even 5 to 10 lbs can make a difference if you are at all overweight. If you smoke, quit. Don't wear any tight-fitting clothing, including socks. If you get an indentation where your socks have been, they are too tight. It can take several months to notice a difference but even if you can lower it just slightly and it takes a year, you are going to be in better shape next year than you are now.
Some hypertension is just genetic and in spite of good habits, it still requires medication. That doesn't mean you should throw in the towel. These health improvements will still reduce your risk of disease in the long run.