High blood pressure is one of the many cardiovascular conditions that increases health risk on a large portion of the population. There are so many commercials promoting blood pressure management medications and drug commercials warning against the use of a particular drug. Some ways to lower blood pressure includes exercise, meditation, and diet.
On average, 70% of people treated for a stroke, heart attack, or congestive heart failure have blood pressure readings that are equal to or greater than 140/90. High blood pressure can also lead to other more serious conditions including atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), kidney damage, vision loss, erectile dysfunction, and memory loss.
Your risk for developing high blood pressure increases even more if you have diabetes, are overweight or obese, smoke, have high cholesterol, or are inactive. As indicated earlier, there are medications that address high blood pressure and high cholesterol, but these medications only work effectively if they are combined with other lifestyle changes. These changes include a healthier diet, losing weight, and increasing activity levels including exercise.
How does exercise help to lower blood pressure? Regular exercise has been proven to help people reduce stress, weight, and improve heart health. All of which contribute to lowering blood pressure. In fact, a recent study in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research by Marcio Mota, et al (1), looked at a group of 15 white collar workers who averaged 43 years old with hypertension. They were provided with a routine of 20 minutes of treadmill running and 20 minutes of resistance exercise. They compared this group to a control group of hypertensive white collar workers that did not do any exercise.
The study found that the systolic and diastolic blood pressures of the people in the exercise group remained significantly lower not only within 1 hour after the exercise routine, but up to 7 hours later (after they completed their work day). So, within only one session of exercise, these individuals benefitted for a significant part of the day from lower blood pressure.
The take home here is, if you or anyone you know is at risk for or has high blood pressure we can assist you in lowering it by developing a customized exercise and nutrition program. Our exercise programs will also help reduce the risk for heart disease and stroke, along with giving you more energy for your daily activities.
If you are unsure of whether or not you have high blood pressure, call us @ 508-845-3974 and schedule yourself for a FREE Health Consultation. We will take your blood pressure during the assessment and discuss exercise and fitness options for a healthier lifestyle.
Reference: Effects of Treadmill Running and Resistance Exercises on Lowering Blood Pressure During the Daily Work of Hypertensive Subjects Mota, Márcio R; Pardono, Emerson; Lima, Laila C J; Arsa, Gisela; Bottaro, Martim; Campbell, Carmen S G; Simões, Herbert G: The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research. 23(8):2331-2338, November 2009. doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e3181bac418
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