Your Blood Pressure: Mission Possible

MAY 2013

YOUR BLOOD PRESSURE: “MISSION POSSIBLE”

Though the cause of your high blood pressure may remain a mystery, controlling your blood pressure is not an impossible task.
There are many ways to aide in preventing and controlling high blood pressure. According to the Nebraska CVH Program, the following 8 tips will be helpful in reaching your blood pressure goals.

• Speak with your health care professional. Ask what your blood pressure numbers are, what your target blood pressure should be and what the numbers mean.
• If you are prescribed blood pressure medication take it exactly as your health care provider advises. Make sure you know what your medication is for, and how and when to take it.
• If you are overweight, lose and maintain a healthy weight. Limit the size of your portions, especially of foods high in calories.
• Eat heart healthy foods with emphasis on fresh fruits, and vegetables and low fat dairy products. Your food plan should also include only a moderate amount of total fat and be low in saturated fat and cholesterol.
• Lower your salt and sodium intake. Read food labels, choosing canned, processed and convenience foods that are lower in sodium. Avoid fast foods that are high in salt and sodium. About one teaspoon, 2400 mg of sodium a day is adequate, if you have not been advised otherwise by your health care provider.
• Drink alcoholic beverages only in moderation. For men that means a maximum of two drinks a day, and for women a maximum of one a day.
• Become more physically active, as advised by your health care provider. Work up to at least 30 minutes of moderate level activity each day, such as brisk walking or bicycling. Two 15 minute or three 10 minute periods a day would also be beneficial if you are unable to find a 30 minute time period.
• If you smoke, quit. Smoking increases your chances of developing a stroke, heart disease, and peripheral arterial disease and several forms of cancer.

As you begin to succeed with these 8 tips, you are accomplishing “Mission Possible”.
Congratulations and we hope to see you soon at one of our Red Willow County Health Department blood pressure clinics located in the Ag Complex at the Red Willow Fairgrounds, 1400 West 5th, McCook. Walk-in’s are welcome! 308-345-1790.This service is provided free of charge.

Peggy Everitt RN
Staff Nurse