Ideal Blood Pressure.  What is the ideal blood pressure and how can you achieve it?

Recently the ideal blood pressure changed.  The American Academy of Family Physicians and the Mayo Clinic issued new recommendations for ideal blood pressure: 115/75.

First let’s go over how blood pressure measurements are attained and then we’ll go over the ideal blood pressure.  We typically determine blood pressure measurements with two numbers.

The higher number, called the systolic pressure, represents the pressure in the artery when the heart beats. The lower number, called the diastolic pressure, represents the pressure when the heart is at rest. The ideal blood pressure is in the range of 120/80.

As mentioned, ideal blood pressure is somewhat lower. A key to ideal blood pressure is the ratio between the two numbers. They should remain at a 3:2 ratio whatever the actual pressure may be.

If your blood pressure is “ideal,” congratulations! Your hard work has paid off. If it is higher or lower than ideal, don’t worry: Most blood pressure problems can be solved with the right approach. Let’s dissect the common problems with blood pressure and see what we can learn about possible solutions so you can attain an ideal blood pressure.

Systolic too high
A healthy systolic number is 120. This number represents how hard your heart must beat to get blood out to your body. If your arteries are stiff, inflexible, inflamed or too narrow your heart will have to beat harder and this will create a higher systolic number. The most common cause of a high systolic number is too much adrenaline and other stress-related hormones in the bloodstream. These hormones have the effect of artificially narrowing your arteries in a “fight or flight” stress response.

Stress-induced high blood pressure will usually be seen with a high systolic number and a normal diastolic number such as 150/80. We will often see this number normalize with just 20 minutes of deep breathing. Try to incorporate that in your life so you can attain your ideal blood pressure.

Some people respond well to biofeedback and supplementation with:

  • Co-Q10, especially at bedtime to relax the heart
  • Vitamin C morning and evening to relax the blood vessels
  • Adaptogen 10 Plus morning and evening to help reduce the effects of stress

Both numbers too high
When both the systolic and diastolic numbers are high (160/110), the most common problem is inflammation leading to atherosclerosis or “hardening of the arteries.” This is a medical emergency; you should be under medical care as the disease has already progressed to the point where emergency measures are necessary. Dietary measures, such as the Dr. Dean Ornish “Reversing Heart Disease” diet, should be at the center of your self-care. Daily exercise, stress management and, very likely, medications will be needed to reverse this disease and get you on the path of achieving your ideal blood pressure.

An anti-inflammatory lifestyle will be helpful. Include supplements such as:

  • Omega-3 Essential Fatty Acids from OmegaPrime at every meal to reduce inflammation
  • Vitamin C and Co-Q10 as suggested above
  • Betalains found in Nopalea can reduce inflammation in the blood vessels and help your body drain away the excess fluid associated with blood pressure

Achieving an optimal body fat percentage is also critical when caring for high blood pressure and attaining your ideal blood pressure. The target body composition for men is 14% body fat; for women it is 23%. Remember, this type of high blood pressure is a medical emergency and it should be treated as such.

Diastolic too high
When the bottom number in your blood pressure reading is too high (120/90), but the systolic or top number is normal, it can mean that your lungs, kidneys and liver are not properly detoxifying your body.

Detoxification is an automatic process; your body does it every moment of every day. You can help support this process by reducing your exposure to toxins and supporting your lungs, kidneys and liver with daily nutrition:

  • A multiple vitamin and mineral supplement to support healthy detoxification
  • Vitamin C – a powerful detoxifier for the lungs, kidneys and liver
  • Betalains found in Nopalea also drain away toxins

For more information on detoxification, listen to the audio books, “Body Systems 101” and “Healthy Aging.”

Too high, too long
Some people find that their blood pressure will not go down no matter what they do. This often happens because of Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA). With OSA, a person stops breathing during sleep. Sensing the shortage of oxygen, your brain increases blood pressure to compensate. These increases in blood pressure may last into the next day (you may awaken with high blood pressure that may go down by the evening). This type of hypertension will usually not respond to medication or alternative treatments.

Treatment for OSA begins with using a breathing machine called CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) during sleep. Using CPAP at night reduces blood pressure in most people – even those without serious OSA. Eventually, reducing your body fat to the percentages listed above will open your airways enough to compensate for OSA.

Hypertension will damage you. Eventually, it will kill you. Check your blood pressure frequently. Your body is speaking to you when your pressure is imbalanced. Learning to listen will help you feel better today and be healthier tomorrow and make it a goal to achieve your ideal blood pressure.

Take Control of Your Health

* Test your blood pressure every month
* Check your blood pressure at different times of the day
* Eat a low-fat diet
* Eat 7, 9 or more servings of vegetables and fruits daily
* Exercise for 30 minutes on most days of the week
* If you have high blood pressure, test for OSA

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Wishing you much health and wellness


Katherine Smith
TriVita Independent Affiliate Member 13158176