Report on ¡§305 Questions of High Blood Pressure¡¨

High blood pressure is a chronic disease and hard to detect. But its complications always occupy more than half of the top ten death-causing diseases every year bringing upon itself the name ¡§intangible killer.¡¨ No matter how advanced medical technology is today, 90% to 95% of high blood pressure patients still cannot find the exact cause of the disease. Modern society continuously gives people higher pressure and strain from many directions. Not only these pressures but also a long-term lack of exercise and a balanced diet adversely affect our health as a whole and form widely spread problems - high blood pressure. High blood pressure itself is not a disease but a dangerous factor affecting and causing other diseases.

What is high blood pressure?
Blood pressure is measured as systolic/diastolic pressure. Simply put, blood pressure measured is normal at around 130/85mmHg, but you might have high blood pressure if measured as 140/90mmHg. The unit ¡§mmHg¡¨ has been adopted because sphygmomanometers in earlier times were made of mercury and recorded with ¡§mmHg.¡¨ This why all sphygmomanometers use this recording method and are still marked as such.
¡@¡@ Pressure exists in everyone¡¦s blood vessels otherwise blood cannot circulate through our bodies. But if the pressure gets too high, damage occurs to the arteries and enhances the rate of coronary and arterial heart disease, heart failure, stroke, retinal bleeding or detachment and kidney exhaustion. Furthermore, high blood pressure does not have any ailments until it damages your arteries. The only way to know whether you have high blood pressure is to sit steadily and measure your blood pressure with a ¡§sphygmomanometer.¡¨ Place emphasis on long-term measurements as months or years and the average blood pressure from repeated measurements.
How many types of high blood pressure are there?
Generally speaking, high blood pressure is separated into two major kinds:
a. Rarely-seen but the cause is already known - ¡§Secondary Hypertension¡¨
b. Common, but the cause is still unknown - the term ¡§Essential hypertension,¡¨ has gradually been replaced by ¡§ Primary Hypertension¡¨
What causes high blood pressure?
As demonstrated by much research, besides heredity, there are four other dangerous elements that cause high blood pressure:
1. Obesity
2. High-Na diet
3. Low-Potassium diet
4. Overuse of alcoholic consumption
  The effect from these elements is also associated with heredity, which means they have more influence on those people who have a family history of high blood pressure. Physical, mental situations and social pressures are counted in as well.

There are four kinds of medicine causing high blood pressure:
1. The OTC (over-the-counter) drugs, or nonprescription medications which you can buy in a pharmacy by yourself
2. The drugs which you must buy with a doctor¡¦s prescription
3. Herbs
4. Addictive drugs
  In industrial countries, the average blood pressure will increase with age, so people tend to think it¡¦s normal that older people have higher blood pressure thus needing treatments. As a matter of fact, it¡¦s incorrect. Demonstrated by long-term research, high blood pressure that occurs in old people is much more dangerous than in middle-age people, for old people are more vulnerable to heart disease and strokes.
Actually, both high systolic and high diastolic pressure are equally dangerous. According to past academic theory, doctors thought high blood pressure is caused by arteriosclerosis, the process of aging, and is only dangerous when diastolic pressure is high. But new theories prove that those ideas are incorrect. For people over 40, systolic pressure is more predictive of future strokes, coronary arterial heart and other diseases, than diastolic pressure is.
How is blood pressure measured correctly?
Attach the stethoscope or sensor near your elbow (a little higher than the elbow), on the so-called arm artery. This is the international standard method of blood pressure measurement.
¡@¡@ When you measure your blood pressure, release 2mmHg of pressure from the rubber band every second. Don¡¦t release faster than this speed or your blood pressure will be under-measured by 5 to 10mmHg. Additionally, the result is also susceptible to your body size. If your arms are bulky, the blood pressure might be over-measured by 20mm Hg; but if you are slim, it might be under-measured by 5 to 10mm Hg.
¡@¡@ A woman¡¦s period has no effect on blood pressure, unless pain or the pain from the period increases blood pressure. Being physically stressed, in pain, afraid, angry, or harassed before measuring will result in an incorrect result which is also easily affected by alcohol, drug and holding urine. No matter how precise the measurement is, you cannot count on only a one-time measurement but an average from repeated measurements.
¡@¡@Cold is a very influential factor increasing your blood pressure. If you just happened to have come home on an extremely cold winter day, you have to warm your body for at least half an hour before measuring your blood pressure.
Something you should know when taking ntihypertensive drugs:
If you measure your blood pressure often and the average reading has been over 140/90mm Hg for three months, you might need to take antihypertensive drugs. Other cases include having diabetes, having had any organ damaged such as having leg pain, a stroke or a temporary partialischemic stroke (a kind of coronary arterial heart attack) caused by angina pectoris or an artery, any of your family members having had such a disease, or if your average blood pressure is over 160/110mm Hg. The best suggestion here would be for you to undergo antihypertensive drug therapy. You can help reduce drug use by doing one of the following but it¡¦s very unlikely that you¡¦ll come off the therapy completely. You can quit smoking, lose weight (for overweight people), reduce alcohol consumption, exercise frequently and eat less salty food in the period of taking the medicine, so that the remedy will work much better.
¡@¡@Once you start to take antihypertensive drugs, it¡¦s very unlikely that you¡¦ll come off them completely. Many who do have gradually increased blood pressure afterward.
¡@¡@Do inform your doctor if you have asthma, for some antihypertensive drugs might be dangerous for you.
What should high blood pressure patients eat?
High blood pressure patients should decrease consumption of alcohol, fat, and salt (Na); and increase that of flour, vegetables, fruits, and especially fish with thick fat such as mackerel, alec, salmon, and trout which are vital for high blood pressure patients and able to prevent coronary arterial and heart attacks. Don¡¦t cook with the same oil repeatedly. Because once the oil has been heated, more saturated fat is produced, which will enhance the blood cholesterol rate more than unsaturated fat does. Therefore, when ingesting the same amount of fat, it¡¦s much healthier to have a higher rate of oil and unsaturated fat in it. Saturated fat is mainly from animals, and unsaturated fat mainly from vegetable oil or primary consumers.
What should a high blood pressure patient stop doing?
If you are a high blood pressure patient, you should stop fierce or competitive games, such as racing, tennis, weight lifting, and sit-ups, for those exercises increase your blood pressure temporarily to a dangerous level.
¡@¡@The rate of acquiring diabetes is higher in high blood pressure patients than in average people. This is probably because that both diabetes and high blood pressure are caused in similar ways.
What else should you notice?
People who used to live in a high altitude area for a long time may have very thick blood. Resulting from the thin air on the mountains, their blood needs to produce more red cells so as to transmit oxygen. However, because of this high consistency of blood, the danger of high blood pressure and strokes is relatively greater to them as well.
¡@¡@90% of high blood pressure patients are fully allowed to enjoy a normal sexual life.
¡@¡@Pregnancy makes blood pressure lower, but pay special attention if it becomes high. During pregnancy, both mother and baby need oxygen, thus there will be more blood produced by a mother¡¦s body to make the overall blood amount increase in twelve to thirteen weeks. With the rest of the body¡¦s conditions unchanged but only the overall blood amount increased, blood pressure will increase. In order to prevent from high blood pressure, placenta will release hormones to loosen the vessel veins and small arteries. As a result, the vessels can expand to the extent allowing increased blood traffic transmitting so as to prevent the heart from over-beating, decreasing blood pressure.
The best ways to prevent high blood pressure:
1. Quit smoking: if you smoke, stop.
2. Exercise: frequent exercise can decrease blood pressure.
3. Weight control: you must go on a diet if you are overweight.
4. Diet control: it depends on what you eat most often. Don¡¦t eat too much salty food.
5. Drink properly: it depends on how much you drink usually.
6. Keep a habit of measuring your blood pressure.
7. Maintain a happy mood all the time.
  Remember one thing: more than enough is too much and vice versa
Gocanning Manufacture Department Li-qio Chen