What is high blood pressure? Which high blood pressure do you have? And, how did you get it? We hear all the time our students tell us that high blood pressure runs in the family so they can’t do anything about it. They feel destined to take pills for the rest of their life. But it doesn’t have to be that way.
We aren’t doctors we are chefs. But we are passionate about helping you feel better. According to the Mayo Clinic, there are two types of high blood pressure. One called primary (essential) hypertension and secondary hypertension.
I would wager a bet not a lot of people know that! I figured high blood pressure was high blood pressure, period. In an article from Mayo Clinic they state that Primary hypertension, “For most adults, there’s no identifiable cause of high blood pressure. This type of high blood pressure, called primary (essential) hypertension, tends to develop gradually over many years.”
A gradual rise in blood pressure can be associated with age, race, family history, smoking, drinking, not exercising, stress and other relate factors. When it comes to the age question, I know I grew up thinking only older people get high blood pressure, grandma and grandpa type folks. But that’s not true. High blood pressure doesn’t care how old you are, I was first diagnosed with high blood pressure in middle school.
Next, we go to secondary hypertension. The Mayo Clinic article described secondary hypertension like this. “Some people have high blood pressure caused by an underlying condition. This type of high blood pressure, called secondary hypertension, tends to appear suddenly and cause higher blood pressure than does primary hypertension. Various conditions and medications can lead to secondary hypertension, including:
- Obstructive sleep apnea
- Kidney problems
- Adrenal gland tumors
- Thyroid problems
- Certain defects you’re born with (congenital) in blood vessels
- Certain medications, such as birth control pills, cold remedies, decongestants, over-the-counter pain relievers, and some prescription drugs
- Illegal drugs, such as cocaine and amphetamines”
Which makes me wonder. How many people really have secondary hypertension? And if by eliminating the medications, drugs and other underlying problems their blood pressure would correct itself? It’s worth asking your doctor which type of hypertension you have. Who knew birth control pills and over the counter sinus remedies could be the culprit?
Growing up I figured high blood pressure was just from salt. We’ve all seen the “super salter” at the table layering on the salt over their food. But who knew how much sodium you already get without adding any. Lord knows there’s enough salt in all the manufactured foods out there without adding any on our own. I love this article from Mayo, “How to Tame Your Salt Habit.”
Well, I hope this tip of the day will help you on your journey. Be sure to ask your doctor what over the counter meds or prescriptions you may be taking that could be having a negative impact on your blood pressure.
Stay well and choose today to be happy joyous and free.
Kristi and Miriam