What is blood pressure? I’m going to try and not get too technical here, but I think most folks know that it is basically the force of your blood flowing through your blood vessels. So, Does Diabetes Cause High Blood Pressure? Let’s explore this:
What is the Connection Between Diabetes & Hypertension?
Your health care provider or physician takes your blood pressure numbers with a blood pressure monitor which I’m sure everyone has done more than once in their lives.
The results are two numbers such as a normal pressure reading 120/80. Each number is very important. There is a connection between high blood pressure and diabetes which I’ll discuss later.
The “top” number (in this case 120) represents the pressure at which your heart beats and pushes blood through your vessels. This is otherwise known as “systolic” pressure. The “bottom” number (80) represents the pressure when your vessels begin to relax between heartbeats.
This is also referred to as the “diastolic” pressure. So basically, you’re looking for your numbers to be in the 120/80 range. That’s really all you need to know and be comfortable with. Make sure you know where your numbers should be.
Number Risks and High Blood Pressure
- Healthy blood pressure: 120/80
- Beginning of high blood pressure: between 120/80 and 140/90
- High blood pressure: Anything over 140/90
Obviously you want your blood pressure lower because that decreases the possibilities of having or preventing a stroke or heart attack. You should always know your blood pressure numbers as well as your blood sugar numbers because both play a very important part of your health.
You won’t know if you have high blood pressure unless it’s checked by your doctor or yourself if you have a home monitor to do so. It is a silent issue so don’t ignore having it checked. It’s very serious.
This is not a good combination to say the least. I have my own blood pressure under control and check it with my own monitor at home. Having type 2 diabetes will increase your risk of having high blood pressure.
Risks for heart disease come from high blood pressure and high blood sugar. Having diabetes increases heart problems by 4 times as much in females and 2 times as much in males. With high blood pressure and diabetes your risk doubles over those numbers.
Since a resistance to insulin causes type 2 diabetes, this causes a build up of sugar in the blood. You’ll want a reliable test kit to monitor your sugar numbers. Obesity is a big cause of this. A buildup of sugar in the blood makes more insulin and in turn the insulin makes your body retain more fluids and salt and guess what?
This is one way that diabetes and high blood sugar increase your risk for high blood pressure. You also want to watch that you don’t have low blood sugar either. This is even worse than high blood sugar.
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Reduce Diabetes Issues With Lower Blood Pressure
If you have diabetes and high blood pressure, then the best way for you to decrease your chances of death is to keep your blood pressure down. In addition, you’re also prone for risks relating to kidney and eye complications too. The most common cause of blindness is due to diabetes.
You can lower all your diabetes risks by approximately 12% just by keeping your lower blood pressure number by 10 points. If you have diabetes, then shoot for your numbers to be at or lower than 120/90. If you have kidney disease too, then aim for 130/80.
Watch the Video Below for More on Diabetes & Blood Pressure
Lower Your Blood Pressure With These Healthy Tips
- Don’t smoke. Period. There’s nothing healthy about smoking.
- Lose weight. I’m sure you’ve been told that before? Losing weight lowers your blood pressure.
- Limit salt intake. One teaspoon a day at most. Salt is NOT good for high blood pressure. Stay away from processed foods that are loaded with sodium. Go for anything with reduced or low sodium listed on the package or label.
- Pain relievers. Over the counter anti inflammatory drugs have been known to raise blood pressure.
- Stop drinking! OK, I only say that because I don’t drink, but seriously only have alcohol in moderate amounts. Have apple cider vinegar instead.
- Move it! You know how important exercise is, so just get moving. Walk, do anything, just make the effort. It’s serious for your health and blood pressure to keep moving. Exercise 30 minutes a day 5 days a week.
- Eat healthy. Vegetables and fruits and other healthy foods such as nuts, fish, and proteins. The healthier you eat, the better your blood sugar numbers and blood pressure numbers become.
- Medication. I take my medication everyday for blood pressure and diabetes. While I am aiming for natural ways to remedy these health issues, I follow what the doctor guides me to do. Don’t forget or skip taking your meds.
- Eat smaller meals. It’s much better and healthier to have 4-6 smaller meals daily than 3 large ones.
- Cook healthier. Grill and bake and avoid frying altogether.
- Sleep. Get enough sleep because it’s important to function the next day.
- Stress. Tops when it comes to high blood pressure. Eliminate stress!
The Best Foods for Keeping the Pressure Down
- Bananas. All fruits are healthy. Bananas contain potassium and you can add them to most anything or just have as a snack.
- Ginger. It calms your stomach down. My mom used to always give me ginger ale to calm down the feeling of nausea too. It reduces inflammation which can be a big contributor to some cancers and arthritis as well.
- Beets. I’m not a favorite of beets but you can’t beat the nutritional value they provide. Researchers have discovered that beets open your blood vessels due to the nitric oxide they contain. Blood pressure can be lowered very quickly due to the nitrates in beet juice.
- Omega 3 with essential fatty acids. Examples are fish, olive oil, krill oil, and avocado. These fatty acids help in preventing inflammation, joint pain and heart disease.
- Berries. I love berries and they are all healthy for you. Because they contain flavonoids, they may help prevent high blood pressure, especially blueberries, strawberries, and raspberries.
- Fruits than contain vitamin C. Fruits such as lemons, grapefruits, and oranges not only fight the common cold, vitamin C has powerful antioxidants that fight inflammation and in turn help lower your blood pressure.
- Oatmeal. It’s great for breakfast, being high fiber and having low sodium and very healthy for you.
- All leafy green vegetables. Spinach (my favorite veg), kale, romaine lettuce, just to name a few.
- Garlic. I’ll admit, it’s not my favorite, but it is healthy for you and can significantly lower your pressure.
- Olive oil. It also is an anti inflammatory and is a healthy fat that reduces high blood pressure.
- Pomegranate juice. Lowers blood pressure, but read the labels because of sugar content. You don’t want high blood sugar so be careful not to overdo it.
- Seeds. You want unsalted seeds because salt can increase your blood pressure, so stick with pumpkin or sunflower seeds because they are high in magnesium and potassium.
- Dark chocolate. I personally prefer milk chocolate, but oh well. Beggars can’t be choosers. LOL It contains less sugar than milk chocolate and more cocoa and is linked to lower risks for cardiovascular disease.
Additional Pointers That Can Help With Hypertension
Relax and take time to breathe deeply. Slow breathing exercises and yoga are beneficial for you. You don’t want to be stressed or worry about everything. Sleeping right is crucial for your body to function. There are a lot of issues with your body that can relate to hypertension. Eat healthy and choose the right foods.
Apple cider vinegar is a huge benefit for your body and is something to consider for your health as well. Supplements are always helpful if you know which ones to take and what they can do for you. Supplements can lower blood sugar which will help your blood pressure too.
Exercising is what you really need to do and you know it. For me, it’s bike riding. I love getting out on my bike and it doesn’t seem like it’s exercise that’s hard to do. If I can’t get out to ride, I use my foldable exercise bike indoors, so there’s no excuses.
Losing weight is huge in keeping your blood pressure in check. You don’t want diabetes and belly fat contributes to that. So, all of these things are important to staying away from hypertension.
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Does Diabetes Cause High Blood Pressure? It can and it does. High blood pressure is dangerous. There’s no doubt about that. It’s vital that you check yours frequently and eat right and exercise to keep it down. It’s your health and it’s important.
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