Hypertension is not always the result of high blood cholesterol. There are other reasons why the blood pressure can be higher. The reasons may vary from person to person but the most common possibilities are smoking, alcohol, high amount of caffeine and salt. It is not always necessarily cholesterol that is the villain for the body. In fact, it is the high blood pressure that is more dangerous than having high blood cholesterol.
Hypertension Or High Blood Pressure
Anything above the normal range of blood pressure is hypertension. If you are just diagnosed with hypertension, it is important to manage it at the earliest. The bad effects of hypertension are highly damaging. It can affect more than your heart.
The Bad Effects Of High Blood Pressure Or Hypertension
Hypertension can be a silent killer that damages the blood vessels and arteries before it shows any outward symptoms.
- The high pressure of the blood flow damages the blood vessels by destroying the cells.
- It causes the arteries to lose its elasticity
- It weakens the artery walls and causes the enlargement of a section. This condition is called aneurysm that can also lead to rupture and internal bleeding.
- Causes narrowing of arteries that can create a block in the blood flow. This can lead to heart attacks.
- Hypertension causes the heart to work harder. This constant fatigue leads to the hardening of the ventricle causing heart attacks.
- Hypertension weakens the heart muscles.
- Hypertension can damage the brain cells causing stroke
- The narrowing of the arteries can also lead to dementia, Alzheimer’s or other cognitive diseases
- It can affect the kidney functioning
Major Causes Of Hypertension
- Salt: Higher salt intake or having too much of the processed or fatty food can sure cause hypertension. The excess salt in the body causes an imbalance in the general functioning. It creates havoc in the kidneys. It becomes difficult for the kidney to excrete the water efficiently. The result is water and toxins accumulation in the blood and cells. This puts pressure on the heart pumping. This is one of the main causes of hypertension. This situation is lowered by having a low sodium diet and drinking excess water.
- Alcohol: Alcohol can increase the blood pressure dramatically. Drinking too much alcohol, regularly, displaces the balance of the blood health. The increased alcohol level in the blood can not only cause hypertension but can also affect the heart or cause stroke as well. Having salty items along with the alcohol is also equally damaging. This way you are adding more risk factors together.
- Smoking: It is the nicotine in the cigarette that is causing the damage. Nicotine is not just a cancerous substance but can also affect the cardiovascular health of the body. It can raise the blood pressure, cause narrowing of the arteries and blood vessels or even harden the artery walls. All of these can also cause elevated pressure in the blood flow.
- Caffeine is a stimulant that can affect so many organs and systems inside the body. Too much of caffeine in the body can spike the blood pressure. Though this may cause only temporary raise in the blood pressure, too much of caffeine taken regularly can damage the cardiovascular health. Drinking more than 4 cups of tea or coffee, too much of diet soda, energy drinks etc can lead to this situation. All of these drinks contain varying amount of caffeine.
The Other Causes Of Hypertension
There are so many factors that can affect the blood pressure value of a person. Age, weight, diet, diseases, medications etc can all cause hypertension.
- Age: As a person ages, the arteries can become stiffer or narrower. This puts pressure on the heart to pump harder. This leads to hypertension.
- Obesity or overweight is another of the common causes that can cause elevated blood pressure. Weight loss and exercises can help reduce hypertension.
- Gender: For some reasons, it is the male population that is affected by hypertension than the females. It can happen even in men of the younger age.
- Health conditions or diseases like diabetes, kidney problems, heart diseases etc can also cause higher blood pressure.
- Physical inactivity can lead to hypertension. Without much activity, the body will be unable to manage the stress and other factors. Accumulation of many such factors could lead to hypertension.
- Low potassium is another factor that causes elevated blood pressure. Potassium helps in the management of sodium in the body. Without enough potassium, sodium can accumulate leading to higher blood pressure. Banana contains high amount of potassium
- Medications: Certain medications can cause hypertension as a side effect.
- Sleep deprivation: Sleep deprivation for a long time can increase stress level in the body that could cause hypertension. Adequate sleep improves the body functions and can help lower the blood pressure.
Hypertension With Low Cholesterol – The Connection
Though high blood pressure and cholesterol have a close link to each other, blood pressure can raise without higher cholesterol. Even with all the above-mentioned factors, one need not have hypertension. It all depends on the condition of the body and the health that determines how these factors can influence the blood pressure levels.
A person can have hypertension and low cholesterol, as well as normal blood pressure with high cholesterol. Hypertension can be a result of other anomalies and disorder in the lifestyle. The common connection is their ultimate destination of heart and its functioning.
When you have hypertension but low cholesterol, the most likely cause is the salt in the diet. Salt or mainly sodium, does not always come from the table salt. The ready to eat foods, processed food, soups, sauces etc contain a good amount of sodium in it. Having too much of these items in the diet can increase the sodium level. When you add in the caffeine, alcohol, and smoking into the picture, you do not need higher cholesterol to have hypertension.
So yes, it is quite possible to have hypertension but low cholesterol, quite easily. But you can easily manage this situation before it can cause any damage to the body.