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A practical guide for nutritional and traditional health care.

High Blood Pressure
(Hypertension)

The circulating blood within the human body exerts a force on the walls of the arteries and veins through which it travels, thus force the exerted by the blood on the walls of the veins and arteries in the body is known as blood pressure. The pressure generated is guided, controlled and regulated by a complex system involving may internal and vital organs such as the heart, the brain, the kidneys and the adrenal glands, of course the blood vessels, that is the veins and the arteries themselves play a large and important role in this regulation. Minute by minute fluctuation of the pressure in blood is not only possible; it is frequent and normally seen in all individuals. In a condition known medically as hypertension, this pressure does not climb down and remains high throughout the day, this is chronic hypertension and it is a serious condition in many people.

Two readings or numbers are used to record the blood pressure in an individual. When the heart contracts it is known as a systole, so a systolic pressure, which is the first number in a reading reflects the contraction of the heart and the sudden gush of oxygen laden blood into the arterial system for distribution to the tissues. When the heart relaxes or dilates, it is called a diastole, the diastolic pressure of blood, which is the lower number is thus a reflection of the relaxation or dilation of the heart. Using these two numbers, a normal range or pressure for most people has been calculated and thus in an average human adult, the systolic pressure is 120, and the diastolic is 80, this is written as 120/80, there is also a wide range around this two numbers and this numbers reflect only the usual blood pressure. During chronic conditions of hypertension however, the blood pressure averages very high systolic and diastolic ranges, thus a person can be said to be suffering from hypertension when the average blood pressure hovers around 140/90 or possibly higher, where two separate measurements have been undertaken.

The majority of sufferers from hypertension are afflicted with a type of raised blood pressure known as essential hypertension, this form occurs in an amazing 90% of afflicted patients, the underlying reason for the presence of hypertension in this case is unidentified. There are however some generalizations that can be made, gender is an important factor as a risk, for example men are more likely than women to develop hypertension. The other possible risk factors include any history of hypertension in the family, habits like smoking, medical conditions like obesity and a diet rich or abundant in sodium. As a demographic group African Americans are more prone compared to whites where the development of hypertension is concerned.

Supplements and herbs

An immediate change in lifestyle and regular exercises are called for where a moderate condition of hypertension exist in an individual, which is in the ranges of 140 to 159 systolic and 90 to 99 diastolic in a person, such mild hypertension cases also require the consumption of supplements of calcium and magnesium by the patient. In those cases of people falling in blood pressure ranges above this mark, supplements must not be used on a self-prescribed basis and a doctor must be consulted under whose supervision the best means to combat hypertension will be planned.

The blood pressure reducing ability of the mineral calcium has been demonstrated in some studies conducted on patients. Because of its involvement and necessity in the contraction of muscular tissues, calcium forms an important part in the maintenance of blood vessels and the heart. The freer flow of blood is enabled because of the ability of another mineral supplement magnesium to relax the muscles in the walls of the blood vessels and thus aiding in their elasticity. Magnesium also engenders a much more positive effect on the blood pressure of an individual, by helping in the maintenance of two different essential mineral ions in the blood stream, namely the levels of sodium and potassium. When used as a supplement, the blood pressure in an individual is also effectively reduced through the actions of the mineral. Direct supplements of the mineral potassium are however largely not required, the simple expedient of including abundant fruits and vegetables in the diet is a sufficient and health giving measure in most patients.

After having used supplements of calcium and magnesium for about a month, should you find no changes in the blood pressure, abandon these mineral supplements, while still maintaining a healthy lifestyle, moreover in stead of these two minerals start supplementation using the vitamin C and the hawthorn herb as substitutes. The important role of both of these supplements is in that they increase the dilation of the blood vessels, that is they widen the veins and the arteries significantly. Another supplement to consider for use is the coenzyme Q10, this compound is essential in the maintenance of a normal blood pressure as an inadequate supply of this substance in the body is thought to be the cause behind blood pressure increases in more than a third of patients. Other supplements and products such as the oil of the flaxseed and a variety of fish oils contain the essential fatty acids in abundance and help in maintaining the circulatory system. Other supplements that can possibly help in this role are the amino acids. Utilized as a supplement, the amino acid taurine is believed to alleviate a high blood pressure through its action of normalizing the rise in nervous system activity accompanying hypertension in an individual. Elasticity and dilation of the blood vessels is another important role performed by the amino acid called arginine. To get the optimal results, these amino acids can be used combined along with a combination of other amino acids in an amino acid complex.

Aromatherapy

Commonly used essential oils for high blood pressure:

Homeopathy

While monitoring the results carefully, a single month utilizing one of these homeopathic remedies at one dose on a daily basis will suffice in combating hypertension in the individual. The important thing to remember about any homeopathic medication is that where it induces a strong reaction from the patient or where it seems to having positive effects over some doses, the dosage must be stopped until symptoms reappear and require the use of the remedy again. This is so, because the positive effects of a single dose of one of these remedies may sufficiently suppress the symptoms of the disorder for several days to weeks in some cases.

  • Aurum
    Aurum is to be used in the homeopathic treatment of individuals in whom the symptoms of hypertension may include the weakening of the valves along with a loss of elasticity and disorders like full fledged arteriosclerosis. Other physical symptoms in such patients can include the sudden sensation of blood surging into the region of the chest. Accompanying ailments also typical of patients are the development of a violent and extreme headache, in the night the patient may further suffer from intense pains. Other disorders that can cause this form of hypertension are the arrival of menopause in women, diseases and disorders of the uterus. Symptoms also include cardiac palpitations, where the heart apparently stops beating, and restarts by itself. Another symptom is angina. Psychologically the patients may suffer from some forms of depression, feelings of hopelessness and despair, accompanied by suicidal thought and actions. Grief and personal tragedy as well as failures can trigger the onset of this form of hypertension. The condition of the patient greatly worsens in inclement or cold weather, during the winter, and in the daytime, the consumption of alcohol can also aggravate the intensity of the symptoms. The condition of the patient improves after receiving some relaxation and rest and on the application of warm and soothing compresses.
  • Belladonna
    Belladonna is to be used in the homeopathic treatment of individuals suffering from hypertension in which the symptoms may include the presence of acute hypersensitivity, the pupils may be dilated and enlarged, the face is flushed and reddened and feels hot to the touch. The blood vessels of the individual also seem to pulsate and throb by intensely and the patient may suffer from a pounding headache. This form of hypertension may be engendered and can be induced by psychological states such as extreme anger and rage. The condition of the patient can greatly worsen around 3 p.m. during the night, on the arrival of menopause in women, during pregnancy, when exerting oneself, on exposure to the heat of the sun, and on experiencing jarring or violent movements. The presence of one or more of these symptoms requires the immediate use of Belladonna as a homeopathic remedy in the treatment of the individual suffering from hypertension.
  • Lachesis
    Lachesis is to be used in the homeopathic treatment of patients suffering from hypertension in which the symptoms include the presence of hypersensitive like symptoms including the reddening and flushing of the face and the sensation of heat on them. There is an arrhythmic and irregular heart beat, the patient may fear the heart may stop beating altogether during the night. There is a feeling of being constricted in the regions of the head, the abdomen and the throat. The patient may experience muscular tremors and tremble all along the body as a further physical symptom. The patient may also suffer from some forms of bruising and physical ailments on the body. Psychologically the condition of the patient is affected by and includes suspicious feelings, and extreme jealousy, the person may become very vivacious and talkative in turn. The patient may also experience suffocating sensations when asleep. The condition of the patient greatly worsens in women during the period before the menstrual cycle, in most patient the condition is aggravated on waking up after and on being exposed to heat or hot weather. The condition of the women patients greatly improves when menstruation commences.

Additional things you may do

One of the first steps in the alleviation of the condition is through exercises on a daily and regular basis; it is advisable to lose weight especially if you are obese. Blood pressure can increase in people even with a few extra pounds above their normal range or body type. The importance of regular and daily physical exertion cannot be overemphasized as an optimal strategy to combat hypertension; aerobic exercises or a daily walk must be included as positive factors for health. Include about ten servings of fruits and vegetables in the daily diet, carefully follow and maintain dietary discipline, and include low-fat dairy products, the consumption of food items with a lot of salt or fat must be reduced or avoided altogether. As far as the more moderate form of hypertension is concerned a new study conducted on patients suggest that such careful dietary restriction can play even an alternative role or become positive and effective substitutes to prescription medications in terms of the treatment of hypertension in patients.

Usual dosage

  • Hawthorn, 100 - 150 mg thrice daily.
  • Vitamin C, 1,000 mg thrice daily. If diarrhea develops, reduce the dose.
  • Magnesium / Calcium, 500 mg magnesium and 1,000 mg calcium daily. Not recommended for patients with kidney disease.
  • Arginine, 1,000 mg L-arginine two times daily (on an empty stomach).
    Not recommended for patients with kidney disease or genital herpes, or  who are prone to cold sores.
  • Taurine, 500 mg L-taurine two times daily (on an empty stomach).
  • Essential fatty acids, one tbsp (14 gr) of flaxseed oil daily; 1,000 mg of fish oils thrice daily.
  • Coenzyme Q10, 50 mg two times daily, taken with meal.

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Comments

From An Jalique Ottley ND - 2010
One side effect that some of my patients have experienced was hawthorn berries increased breakthrough spotting and heavy menstrual flow, but it decreases cramping dramatically.
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