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High Blood Pressure And Its Causes

             Although many people in this world have a problem with hypertension or high blood pressure, as it is more commonly known, many are ignorant on the subject. There is a great deal of discussion about hypertension or high blood pressure but does one really know the facts or causes of it? Often, the first vital statistic taken during a medical examination is the blood pressure reading. What does the number really mean; what if anything controls it; why is a blood pressure level so important?.
             One might ask, "what is blood pressure?" Blood pressure is a measurement of the pressure on the artery wall when the blood is flowing through the arteries. The amount of force used to move the blood determines the pressure. If the artery is restricted the pressure is higher and the heart must work harder to maintain enough blood flow throughout the body. The heart can beat up to one hundred thousand times a day. Each time it beats, blood is pumped from the heart to the arteries. This increases the pressure in the arteries. "There are two types of pressure, systolic and diastolic. Systolic pressure is the peak pressure at the moment when your heart contracts in the process of pumping out blood. Diastolic pressure is the pressure at a moment when your heart relaxes to permit the inflow of blood." (The American Medical Association Family Medical Guide 389) The systolic pressure is the top number of a reading, while diastolic is the number on bottom. Opinions vary on blood pressure and what is considered high. A consistent reading of 140/90mm HG or higher is considered high blood pressure. ("Seven must-have medical tests").
             People with blood pressure over 140/90 tend to have habits in need of change. These individuals may be overweight from eating foods high in fat, calories and cholesterol. High blood pressure can impact individuals who are pregnant or insulin resistant. ("What causes high blood pressure?") High cholesterol clogs the arteries causing restriction, which increase blood pressure to allow the blood to flow through the arteries.

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