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Is High Blood Pressure Blowing Your Mind?

Is High Blood Pressure Blowing Your Mind?

If you have chronic high blood pressure (HBP), it fogs your brain, making it hard for you to see clearly what’s going on.

Two studies reveal that if your blood pressure is over 140/90 you’re at substantially increased risk for cognition problems -- even if you’re taking antihypertensive medications. Around 6% of the general population reports difficulty thinking clearly, but it’s 8% for folks with HBP. In addition 25% of people with HBP report physical and non–physical functional problems, such as difficulty with mobility and memory, as opposed to 15% of folks without HBP.

Four ways to take pressure off

  1. Check your BP annually; if elevated, discuss anti-hypertension meds with your doctor. An elevated BP is very treatable. There are over 10 different classes of drugs. If you’re given a prescription -- fill it and take the meds as directed. Two-thirds of people don’t.
  2. Loose weight if you’re overweight. In a Cochrane Review, researchers identified several year-long studies in which people losing around 9 pounds lowered their systolic pressure (the top number) by 4.5 and diastolic (the bottom number) by 3. Even small reductions help protect your cardiovascular system.
  3. To lose weight and keep it off, banish all trans and most saturated fats, processed grain, and all red and processed meats.  
  4. Deflate stress with exercise (10,000 steps a day) and meditation.
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