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If the two people sitting closest to you have normal blood pressure, chances are you don't!

According to both The American Heart Association and the Centers for Disease Control a whopping one in three Americans now have hypertension - high blood pressure.  What used to be a disease for grandfathers, is now showing up in everyone from college students to grandmothers.

The disease occurs when blood pumps too forcefully through your blood vessels. The great push of blood stretches veins and arteries out of shape. The vessels then tear and develop scar tissue as they try to heal. These scars act like burs, on which cholesterol gets caught and builds up. Another scenario is that vessels tear and rupture, sending fast flowing blood everywhere.

To complicate matters, elevated blood pressure doesn't cause symptoms until it's in its late stages, meaning most people don't even know they have it. By then they are already at increased risk for heart attacks and stroke, the first and third leading causes of death in the United States.

Why the increase? A lot has to do with rapidly increasing obesity rates. Over 33.8% of American adults and 17% of children ages 2 to 19 are clinically obese. Additionally we are eating more high sodium manufactured food than ever before.

THE GOOD NEWS? Hypertension can be prevented and treated with lifestyle changes alone.

If you are interested in 6 basic steps that can help you incorporate these changes into your lifestyle email me at yaakov@nutrition4allseasons.com 

A way of preventing and helping to treat hypertension is summed up by Latin poet Marcus Valerius Martial when he said "Life is not merely to be alive, but to be well"

 

IIN 2012

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