Blood pressure is a vital life force that keeps our bodies moving, blood flowing, and our organs functioning. While blood pressure is vital for life, having too high blood pressure can be a serious threat. Understanding what blood pressure is, what a healthy blood pressure reading looks like, and how to deal with high blood pressure can be essential for long-term health and wellbeing. 

What Is Blood Pressure? 

Before outlining why tracking your blood pressure is important, it is first useful to outline what the term blood pressure actually means. The term blood pressure is used to describe the force that moves blood through the circulatory system. Without blood pressure, it would be impossible for your body to move oxygen and nutrients around the circulatory system to nourish tissues and organs. Not only does blood pressure push oxygen and nutrient through your circulatory system. It also delivers white blood cells and antibodies such as insulin. Blood pressure does not only deliver the critical ingredients for health, but it also works to take less desirable products in our bodies, such as carbon dioxide and other toxins, to the liver and kidneys for disposal. 

Understanding Blood Pressure Readings 

Now that you understand a little bit more about what blood pressure is, it is useful to explain how you can understand the information provided by a reliable blood pressure meter. Blood pressure readings consist of two different figures, systolic pressure, and diastolic pressure. A blood reading will be represented with the systolic pressure over the diastolic pressure. 

The systolic pressure is the higher figure shown, and it represented the heart's contraction. The diastolic reading will be the lower number and will show the lower pressure in the arteries that occurs in the "resting" time between each heartbeat. 

What is a Normal Blood Pressure Reading? 

Health professionals say regard a healthy blood pressure is reading as less than 120 mm Hg for the systolic number and lower than 80 mm Hg for the diastolic number. Elevated blood pressure is reading consistently in the range of 120-129 systolic and less than 80 mm Hg diastolic. When you are consistently showing readings of elevated blood pressure this can lead to hypertension. Hypertension has three stages: stage one ranges between 130-139 systolic and 80-89 mm Hg diastolic, stage two is higher than 140/90 mm Hg, and stage Hypertensive crisis is shown by readings that exceed 180/120 mm Hg.

Causes Of High Blood Pressure 

Some of the most common causes of high blood pressure include:

A high fat, salt, or cholesterol diet
A chronic condition such as diabetes, high cholesterol, or a hormonal condition
A family history of high blood pressure
A lack of physical activity
Older age
Being overweight or obese
Some birth control medications

How to Manage High Blood Pressure 

If you are experiencing high blood pressure, there are many steps that you can take to improve your condition and overall health, without having to jump straight to medication.

Lose Weight 

Increases in blood pressure are commonly associated with increases in weight. Losing weight can be one of the most effective methods of reducing blood pressure. In fact, studies have found that you can expect to reduce your blood pressure by 1 mm Hg for every kilogram of weight you lose.

Exercise Regularly 

Exercise regularly, which is about 30 minutes most days, can have been found to have a great effect on lowering blood pressure. It is important to be consistent when exercising to ensure long-term benefits.

Eat A Healthy Diet 

Eating a healthy diet is another essential step in combating high blood pressure. You should be looking to eat a balanced diet that is low in processed food and sodium.