Hypertension, a problem of very high blood pressure, is a common problem particularly in the United States where as many as one in four people suffer from it. However, those with diabetes are even more susceptible to the problem, and are doubly as likely to have hypertension. Depending on other factors, a person with diabetes may have as much as a 60% chance of also having hypertension.
The two problems are linked by a variety of different factors. The most common and important of which is being very overweight, a problem associated with type 2 diabetes. However, insulin resistance, immune system and autonomic factors all come into play as well. Additionally, hypertension can make some symptoms and conditions of diabetes more dangerous and more prevalent.
Those that have diabetes typically already have stricter blood pressure requirements than those in the rest of the population. This can make hypertension all the more serious, and it’s something that shouldn’t be taken lightly. Serious problems ranging from heart attacks to strokes and more can all stem from prolonged hypertension.
A person who has both diabetes and hypertension can seek out a variety of treatments. There are several classes of drugs which can attack the problem in different ways. Considering the seriousness of hypertension, particularly in those with diabetes, drugs are often recommended as a primary way for combating the issue.
This should also be combined however with a general health and fitness plan designed to lose weight and be healthier. Even moderate amounts of mild exercise can make a big difference over the long term in lowering blood pressure. Participating in moderate to intense exercise several times a week is even better. The physical exertion is healthy in and of itself but should also pay dividends towards a goal of achieving weight loss.
Eating better foods can also make a big difference towards hypertension and high blood pressure levels. Particularly, cutting back on sodium in your diet can have a positive effect as one example. Potassium is a key nutrient that you should be sure to include heavily in your diet as well. While weight loss is a goal, weight loss drugs have to be taken with care. For example, some appetite suppressants actually increase blood pressure as a side effect. Always consult your doctor when considering various medications.
Additionally, smoking can add to the problem of hypertension and needs to be stopped. Avoiding or moderating your intake of alcohol is also important, and other stimulants such as caffeine should be monitored.
With these lifestyle changes you can make a big dent in a combined hypertension and diabetes problem. However, to reach the target goals of improvement and to ensure success it is usually recommended to make these healthier life decisions while also taking one or more medications to help control the problem as well. Considering the seriousness of hypertension and it’s extremely high correlation with diabetes, it is a problem that cannot be overlooked. (by Jennifer Kirkman)