High Blood Pressure’s
Stealthy Assault on Your Brain
If you have high blood pressure, your brain is about ten years older than you are.
You read that right.
High blood pressure ages your brain rapidly. So, if you’re 40, you can expect to start having the same kind of memory and cognitive issues that a 50-year-old has. And if you’re 60 and have high blood pressure… well, your brain is going on 70.
It’s common knowledge that high blood pressure increases your risk of stroke, but high blood pressure’s attack on your brain is subtler and more insidious.
Don’t Starve Your Brain!
When you think about it, it makes sense that it high blood pressure can harm your brain. Your brain needs the oxygen and nutrients that your blood supplies. High blood pressure damages the arteries that carry blood to the brain.
In the most dramatic situations, high blood pressure can cause mini-strokes or full-blown strokes that can leave you permanently disabled or event dead. But high blood pressure can also lead to:
Dementia: Narrow, partially blocked arteries caused by high blood pressure lead to difficulties thinking, speaking, solving problems, and remembering things.
Cognitive Impairment: Milder than dementia, cognitive impairment is still alarming. You forget things more easily, have a more difficult time reasoning through problems, and are at much higher risk for full blown dementia.
Stroke: A stroke happens when the blood supply to your brain is interrupted long enough that your brain cells begin to die off. It’s a common and often tragic situation that can permanently impair your ability to walk, talk, and reason.
In addition to these potentially devastating conditions, high blood pressure prematurely ages your brain. In a research study, scientists examined the affects of blood pressure on brain mass. They found a strong correlation between jumps in blood pressure and a decline in brain mass similar to what’s expected with aging.
But this decline was seen in much younger individuals – people as young as forty with high blood pressure showed an average of 7.2 years of additional brain aging over those with normal blood pressure. Not good.
Your brain needs oxygen and plenty of it. High blood pressure can slowly choke off the supply, causing all sorts of problems with your memory and cognitive function.
Finding ways to keep your blood pressure in a healthy range is an important step to staying mentally sharp as you age.
3 Safe, Free Solutions to High Blood Pressure
Fortunately, when it comes to natural blood pressure control, you have a lot of options. You don’t need to turn to drugs with dangerous and debilitating side effects. You can look to the foods you eat and the kinds of exercise that you do.
In fact, one of the best ways to take control of your blood pressure is easy, safe, and completely free – walking. Going for a brisk walk every day can lower your systolic blood pressure by as many as 8 points, and it can curb your diastolic pressure by 6 points.
Aim to walk one to two miles at a pace that gets your heart rate up. This is a simple, effective workout that you can do anytime and that really works when it comes to lowering blood pressure.
Another free way to control blood pressure is as easy as breathing. For five minutes twice a day, make it a point to breathe deliberately, slowly, and deeply. Use your abdominal muscles to draw in each breath. Exhale by relaxing your muscles completely and allowing the breath to leave naturally. This kind of practiced breathing reduces stress hormones that are linked to increases in blood pressure.
A third, very effective – but not as easy – way to reduce your blood pressure is to cut down on wheat, corn, and sugar. For as many as one in three people, these foods have a very aggravating effect on the body, triggering low but still unhealthy levels of chronic inflammation and inducing chronic stress. In clinical settings, many people see their blood pressure fall by as many as 40 points after cutting out these foods. That’s a dramatic change!
Instead of wheat and corn, try rice and beans with your meals. Swap out sandwiches for salads. Ditch the baked goods and enjoy a square or two of dark chocolate to satisfy your sweet tooth.
We know cutting down on the above foods is tough, but if you’re struggling with high blood pressure, try it for a month and see what happens. You may be so pleased by the results that you find it easy to make the change a permanent one.
Put a Stop to Your Brain’s Unnecessary Aging
Premature brain aging steals your ability to remember thing. It makes you feel foggy, impairs your judgment, and diminishes your cognitive ability…
…If you’ve got high blood pressure, then your brain is aging faster than you are and your quality of life is on the decline.
You can turn things around, though, with these free, simple solutions. Walking more, breathing deeper, and cutting back on wheat can put the brakes on your skyrocketing blood pressure and help you keep your brain young and sharp.