High blood pressure can lead to all sorts of health complications. As we age, blood pressure should be monitored regularly. However, high blood pressure can sometimes be difficult to discover. Oftentimes, you could have high blood pressure and exhibit no externally visible or easily identifiable symptoms. That is why it’s important to know how high blood pressure affects the body and what you can do to stay healthy.
New studies show that the Klotho protein is an anti-aging protein excreted by your kidneys, and one of the effects it has on your body is reducing salt sensitivity, which directly impacts hypertension. This means that patients receiving Klotho therapy in the form of regular substances could effectively prevent hypertension and high blood pressure from occurring in the first place. More time is needed to confirm the effectiveness of such a treatment on human subjects, but the implications are extremely promising.
How Does Blood Pressure Affect Your Health?
Your circulatory system is the network that allows blood to travel throughout your body. The term “blood pressure” generally refers to the pressure exerted onto the insides of the arteries in your circulatory system. This movement of blood is controlled by your heart. When operating the way it’s supposed to, your heart can both expand and fill up with blood and contract to pump the blood out. Both of these actions generate pressure. In a healthy person, the first kind, labeled diastolic pressure, should be around 80mmHg, while the second kind, known as systolic pressure, should be around 120mmHg. Blood pressure is usually displayed with the systolic number over the diastolic number. Consistent pressure at or over 130/80mmHg is considered high.
While several factors can affect blood pressure, it’s common to witness changes as you grow older. More specifically, the older you are, the more likely you are to have high blood pressure, also known as hypertension. Increased pressure can cause internal effects the longer it lasts. In bodies with high blood pressure, the arteries and blood vessels can become damaged and narrowed, interfering with the circulatory system and the organs it supports. High blood pressure can also cause an enlarged heart. If left untreated, these changes can cause the development of serious problems in the heart, eyes, and kidneys.
How Can You Address Age-Related High Blood Pressure?
While research shows that Klotho therapy could mitigate hypertension in the future, there are plenty of things that you can do now to lower your blood pressure.
Common ways to lower your blood pressure include:
- Adjust to a Low-Sodium Diet
Nutrition plays a fairly big role, as hypertension is triggered by the presence of salt. Salt sensitivity generally increases with age, so it’s important to be careful about reducing your salt intake. You can do this by checking the sodium levels on the labels of your food products.
- Reduce Your Alcohol Intake
Alcohol consumption increases blood pressure, so to ensure it remains at a manageable level, it is recommended that you do not exceed 1-2 drinks per day.
- Get Plenty of Sleep
Allowing your body to repair itself with a restful period of sleep is essential to keeping your blood pressure under control. While the ideal amount may vary from person to person, any less than six hours a night can be detrimental.
- Engage in Regular Exercise
Being overweight forces your circulatory system to work harder than usual, increasing your blood pressure. Not only does regular exercise help keep your weight in check, but it is also beneficial in lowering your risk of blood pressure on its own and is a great strategy to manage stress in a healthy way, which also benefits your blood pressure.
- See Your Doctor for Routine Checkups
Because high blood pressure can be hard to identify in your daily life, it’s important to see a doctor at regular intervals to ensure your circulatory system is not overworked.
Individually, each of these strategies can help lower your blood pressure. When applied as a comprehensive health regimen, you significantly reduce your risk of hypertension, ensuring that as you remain healthy as you age.