In the first series of this three-part installment, we discussed the causes of high blood pressure in older adults.

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The focus on today’s article is preventing and managing high blood pressure in older adults. Today’s discussion will include a healthy lifestyle approach that will be broken down into a number of healthy living habits. These habits are easy to practice and will require very little effort especially for seniors.

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  • Eating a Healthy Diet

Managing blood pressure requires limiting the amount of sodium consumed and increasing potassium intake. It is also important to incorporate foods lower in fat, plenty of vegetables, fruits and whole grains. The DASH diet has been recommended in lowering or controlling high blood pressure.

  • Be at a Healthy Weight

Blood pressure has been found to often increase as weight increase. Overweight seniors have disrupted breathing while sleeping which raises their blood pressure. Weight loss is considered an effective lifestyle change to control high blood pressure. It is also important to watch your waistline as too much weight around the waist increases the risk of high blood pressure.

  • Regular Exercise

Seniors might struggle with exercises due to aging and other health conditions. However, if you take into consideration these exercise safety tips, you should be able to remain or maintain some level of activeness.

  • Limit Alcohol Consumption

Drinking alcohol above moderate amounts can raise your blood pressure by a number of points. Additionally, patients taking high blood pressure medication, alcohol reduces its effectiveness. Moderation in alcohol consumption should be considered especially for seniors with other health conditions.

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  • Quit Smoking

Smoking increased your blood pressure minutes after you are done. Quitting helps maintain a normal blood pressure and also reduces your risk of heart disease and stroke. For those that do not smoke, do not start. If you are struggling to quit, it is important to seek professional help through therapy.

  • Effective Stress Management

Learn how to relax as a way to manage stress so as to improve your physical and emotional health and lower blood pressure. Some techniques to manage stress include exercise, meditation, listening to music or getting involved in a hobby.

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