Our family has been suffering from high blood pressure for a long time. My father died as a result of a heart attack caused by prolonged periods of high blood pressure, also known as hypertension (HTN).
Blood pressure (BP) is related to the functioning of the heart and the blood it pumps into the body’s arteries. In very simple words, blood pressure is the force that blood exerts against the arteries’ walls. An artery is a blood vessel that carries blood from the heart to the body. Each time the heart beats, it pumps blood into the arteries. The blood pressure is highest when the heart beats to pump blood to the arteries. This is called systolic pressure.
When the heart is at rest, between beats, the blood pressure drops. This is called diastolic pressure. Blood pressure uses these two values. Both are important. Usually written one above or before the other, such as 120/80. A person’s BP is usually expressed in terms of the systolic pressure over diastolic pressure (mmHg), for example 120/80.
Hypertension (HTN) is sometimes called the silent bomb, because you don’t feel anything wrong. However, it is causing damage to your body. I knew I suffered from hypertension, but never bothered to do anything about it, until I was about fifty. That’s when I started to suffer from strong headaches and a certain dizziness. I went to a physician and started to control it with medication. Then I forgot about it until two years ago when I retired. I then felt my health was deteriorating fast and my sedentary lifestyle definitely had to change.
During 2010 I suffered from hypertension, a heavy infection of my right inner ear, reflux, glaucoma, vertigo (BPPV – Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo) and chronic rhinitis. As you can see, my health was in a dangerous free fall. Corrective actions were necessary if I wanted to continue living.
One of my New Year’s Resolutions is to take care of my body the best I can. I started with my hypertension problem and purchased an automated arm blood pressure meter which diaplays the systolic/diastolic blood pressure, and the heart’s beats per minute. I wanted to know exactly what was my blood pressure on a daily basis at least twice per day. One reading immediately after awakening (before washing/dressing and taking a breakfast drink) while the body is still resting The other reading would be immediately after finishing my daily activities, about four o’clock in the afternoon. I’m keeping a record of the daily readings on a small booklet.
According to the American Heart Association, the average blood pressure ranges between 110/65 and 140/90 in (mmHg). A normal systolic blood pressure would be around 90-119 and a normal diastolic blood pressure would be around 60-79. My last reading this morning at 04:12 a.m. was 117/71 mmHG and my heart’s rate was 66 beats per minute.
We’re eating food with very low sodium content and a diet rich in vegetables and fruits. I started walking around the neighborhood for about 30 minutes and have a goal of reducing my weight at least ten pounds. I’m using all my will power to accomplish these goals. Time will tell how good I am at keeping my word.
Below are several pictures of the blood pressure meter I recently purchased as suggested by my physician.
Oh, before I forget; the price of this digital instrument is $48.10 including the sales tax (ITBMS). I bought it at Panafoto in Panama City, Panama. Please take care of your body—it’s the only one you’ve got. Good Day.