How To Reduce Blood Pressure – This September we are encouraging UK adults to know their numbers! protect against heart attacks and strokes. With street blood pressure checks and on-air interviews, we encourage all adults to measure their blood pressure at home and make healthy lifestyle changes.
High blood pressure can lead to heart attacks, strokes and other illnesses, but it usually has no symptoms, so our annual awareness campaign shows why getting checked is so important.
“Home blood pressure monitoring is an effective and affordable way of managing your blood pressure, and the evidence behind it is growing. It takes the pressure off the NHS at the same time and it really can save lives.”
Know your numbers for the first time! The week brought free blood pressure checks on the high street, organized by Kinetic Wellbeing in association with Blood Pressure UK. Thousands of people have been tested in five cities – Leeds, Manchester, Liverpool, Birmingham and London – and many are grateful to have somewhere to go for a test when it’s harder to see a GP.
“Over the course of the week, 2,900 blood pressure screenings were performed at the roadshow. That’s another 2,900 people who know their numbers!”
Councils, NHS integrated care systems, hospitals, libraries and universities are distributing the information online and some hospitals and councils have set up stalls offering free blood pressure checks.
From left: Councilor Rachel Massey has her blood pressure tested at the Rochdale Town Hall stand. Parish Nursing UK has organized a blood pressure screening for farmers in Greater Warwickshire, leading to new diagnoses and treatments. A blood pressure stall attracted passers-by in Orpington High Street.
NHS London, NHS England and NHS UK took to Twitter, as did charities, public figures and health authorities across the UK, including London Ambulance, St John Ambulance, Yorkshire Ambulance, Stroke Association, Professor Jamie Waterall is the Deputy Chief Nurse of Health. Improvement and Distinction Unit, and Dr Shahed Ahmad is Medical Director of NHS Improvement in NHS England and the South East.
Many medical professionals across the UK have also written supportive messages and videos to support the campaign.
We cover the Independent and Daily Express and 130 regional news providers on national and regional news. Our Chairman, Professor Graham McGregor, has been interviewed for London Live TV and BBC Radio in Leeds, Manchester, Merseyside, West Midlands and Sheffield.
“Lots of interest and lots of questions” Our hypertension nurse, Nirmala Markandu, facilitated individual events at two community group events in New Maldon, South London: the Healthy Minds Community Development Program and the Empowering Seniors Programme. Both involve communities in South Asia, which are often harder to reach but have a higher risk of high blood pressure.
The groups meet weekly for exercises and activities such as competitions, games and singing, followed by coffee and lunch. Nirmala had appointments to monitor blood pressure and discuss diseases such as hypertension and diabetes. He found several people with blood pressure so high they needed emergency treatment – some were over 200mmHg for the highest number – which could save their lives and many more.
“After spending 2 hours with them, I felt like I was working with the hypertension clinic in the hospital again – so much interest and so many questions. The leaflets were a great success and there is talk of the next session in the new year. .”
“We were surprised to see that both had very high readings, but now they are advising the nurses/doctors to investigate and do something about it. We were very happy that our questions were answered in Tamil as well.”
Both groups now want to hold more events and Kingston Council has encouraged more community groups to get involved in blood pressure awareness.
NHS England South East has worked closely with Know Your Numbers this year to provide additional regional support through their Cardiovascular Programme.
They used the theme of measurement. change Management. Using paid advertising on Facebook and Google as the basis for a series of social media messages, giving the campaign an extra push to reach at-risk populations in the Southeast.
Following the success of its #livingwithhypertension campaign this spring, encouraging people to check their blood pressure in lighthearted yet informative videos from health professionals. They received 200,000 views with over 55,000 additional visits to their campaign page. They represented doctors from different ethnic groups, showed that high blood pressure disproportionately affects some communities more than others and included specific messages for ethnic minorities and underserved groups.
Dr Mohit Sharma, Public Health Adviser on Cardiovascular Disease Prevention at NHS England South East told us:
“High blood pressure is one of the most common health conditions in the UK, but most people don’t even know it’s there. The first sign could be something more serious, such as a heart attack or stroke.
“It is a priority for us to diagnose people at risk of hypertension and reverse the progress made in the region before the pandemic.”
The survey was conducted on a nationally representative sample of 2,016 people from the Census. Between 10.08.2022 and 12.08.2022. Follow up and recruit members of the Market Research Society based on the principles of the ESOMAR Census. Since February is American Heart Month, it’s a good time to prioritize not only emotional heart health, but also physical heart health.
Hypertension, or high blood pressure, can increase your risk of cardiovascular disease, such as stroke or heart disease. There is a genetic component to hypertension risk, but many of the factors that predispose you to hypertension can be modified with diet, exercise, and stress management.
Hypertension is thought to be the “silent killer” because there are no physical symptoms until it becomes a serious condition. To get a rough idea of where it falls, it’s important to see your doctor regularly and have your blood pressure checked. Hypertension is clinically defined as a blood pressure reading of 140/90 mm/Hg. Some clinics will classify you as hypertensive if your blood pressure is 130/80 mm/Hg or higher, so keep that in mind.
High blood pressure is the result of excessive stress on the artery walls. Factors such as stress and anxiety, being overweight, being inactive, and consuming large amounts of sodium and saturated fat can cause this increase in strength. Fast food or foods that are especially salty for flavor or preservation can cause the arteries to harden, which in turn impedes blood flow and makes the heart have to work harder to pump blood.
We want flexible, light veins and arteries to allow even blood flow, not stiffness. Eating large amounts of saturated fat, such as sweets, tropical oils, and fried foods, can introduce large amounts of saturated fat and cholesterol into your system.
Other risk factors for hypertension include heart disease, prediabetes or type 2 diabetes, or advanced age. In these cases, it may be a good idea to check your blood pressure regularly. Checking your blood pressure with a home device several times a week and keeping a record can be helpful to your doctor.
Burn fiber: Consuming more fiber can directly lower your blood pressure, helping to lower the amount of cholesterol, salt and sugar in your arteries. Fiber can cause more cholesterol, salt and sugar to enter the bloodstream and prevent it from moving to other parts of the body, such as the heart. Include more sources of soluble fiber in your diet, including oats, beans, nuts, seeds, sweet potatoes, apples, and strawberries.
Maintain salt: We need salt, or sodium, to maintain electrolyte balance. That said, most Americans eat too much salt, whether it’s through processed foods, TV meals, or packaged foods that are high in sodium to help preserve texture and flavor. Sodium increases blood pressure through several mechanisms. This causes your body to retain extra water to dilute the salt and wash away excess water after a day swimming in the salty ocean.
Sodium also causes vasoconstriction, which causes the arteries to narrow and impede blood flow. When reading food labels, if you read that a certain food or packaged food contains more than 300 mg of sodium per serving, that’s probably too much salt in one sitting for most people. Choose fruits or vegetables like bananas.
Increase your step count: We all have a friend or family member who does
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