National High Blood Pressure Education Month

Blood pressure measures the force of blood against the arterial walls. “Blood pressure is recorded as two numbers—the systolic pressure (as the heart beats) over the diastolic pressure (as the heart relaxes between beats) (NHLBI).”

High blood pressure can have serious impacts on health. The increased tension on the arterial walls (hypertension) increases the risk for having a stroke, developing heart and kidney disease and blindness. According to the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute approximately 1 in 4 American adults have high blood pressure and 20.4% don’t know they have it.

Blood Pressure            Systolic (upper #)            Diastolic (lower #)
Category                         mm Hg                                 mm Hg

Normal                               < 120                                         < 80

Prehypertension               120-139                                     80-89

Hypertension Stage 1       140-159                                    90-99

Hypertension Stage 2       > 160                                        > 100

It is very important to keep your blood pressure under control. Natural approaches to preventing and treating high blood pressure include:

  • Maintain healthy weight
  • Reduce sodium intake (<2300 mg/day)
  • Low-fat diet – choose mono/polyunsaturated fats
  • Increase fruits, vegetables and whole grains

For more information on how to prevent and treat high blood pressure click here.

Information contributed by Kristy Thomas, a dietetic intern at Southeast Missouri State University. Kristy spent two weeks at J.W. Terrill learning about community nutrition and corporate wellness.

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About Diane Andrea

Diane is the Wellness Consultant for J.W. Terrill. Diane is a registered and licensed dietitian and certified health coach with over 20 years experience in the wellness field.

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