Recent study challenges conventional blood pressure guidelines

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High blood pressure, also known as hypertension, is a common health concern globally and is a leading contributor to heart disease and other severe health issues.

Traditionally, doctors have monitored two types of blood pressure readings: systolic, which occurs when the heart beats, and diastolic, which occurs when the heart rests between beats.

Historically, health professionals have aimed to keep diastolic blood pressure within 70-90 mmHg.

However, a recent study by researchers at NUI Galway and their colleagues, involving data from over 47,000 patients worldwide, challenges this traditional view.

The findings suggest that there is no need to worry about diastolic pressure being “too low,” as previously thought, and that lower diastolic readings may not be harmful as once feared.

The research has shown that it’s particularly high systolic readings—above 120 mmHg—that significantly increase the risk of heart disease and stroke.

Based on these findings, the study advises that efforts should focus on keeping systolic pressure between 100 and 130 mmHg.

This shift away from worrying about low diastolic pressure could simplify treatment protocols and help prevent heart-related issues more effectively.

These insights could lead to a significant shift in how high blood pressure is treated, emphasizing the control of systolic pressure rather than diastolic.

This new approach could streamline how healthcare providers manage hypertension, potentially reducing the incidence of heart attacks and strokes linked to high blood pressure.

Beyond medical treatment, preventing high blood pressure is key to maintaining health. Some strategies to help manage or prevent high blood pressure include:

Maintaining a Healthy Weight: Being overweight can increase the strain on the heart and raise blood pressure. Keeping a healthy weight is crucial.

Eating a Balanced Diet: A diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat dairy, and lean proteins can help lower blood pressure.

Reducing Salt Intake: High sodium levels can cause the blood vessels to tighten, raising blood pressure. It’s advised to limit salt intake to under 2,300 milligrams per day.

Regular Physical Activity: Exercise helps maintain a healthy weight and can lower blood pressure.

Limiting Alcohol: Drinking too much alcohol can raise blood pressure. It’s recommended that men limit their intake to two drinks per day and women to one.

Quitting Smoking: Smoking harms blood vessels and boosts blood pressure. Stopping smoking can lower both blood pressure and the risk of heart disease.

Managing Stress: Long-term stress can contribute to higher blood pressure. Techniques like meditation, yoga, or deep breathing can help manage stress.

Regular Monitoring: Often, high blood pressure shows no symptoms. Regular checks are important for early detection and effective management.

This new research on diastolic blood pressure not only updates our understanding but also reinforces the importance of focusing on systolic pressure to combat the risks associated with hypertension.

By adopting healthy lifestyle habits and closely collaborating with healthcare providers, individuals can actively manage their blood pressure and enhance their overall health.

This proactive approach to hypertension could redefine standard care practices and improve outcomes for millions of people worldwide.

If you care about blood pressure, please read studies that black licorice could cause dangerous high blood pressure, and this common plant nutrient could help reduce high blood pressure.

For more information about blood pressure, please see recent studies about how coffee influence your risk of high blood pressure, and results showing this olive oil could reduce blood pressure in healthy people.

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