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BellaOnline's Ethnic Beauty Editor

Hypertension Decoded

Hypertension is a condition where an ethnic beauty's blood pressure is high. What actually is blood pressure one may ask. Blood pressure is the measure of the force of blood against the walls of one's arteries as their heart pumps the blood through their body. High blood pressure, or hypertension can become chronic an all the time occurence, which will then present a problem. Items to know: there are two measurements involved when gauging one's blood pressure. 1. Systolic & 2. Diastolic. These depend on whether or not the heart muscle is contracting --systole-- or relaxed --diastole-- between beats. Normal blood pressure is usually below or just at 120 over 80 [120/80] mmHg. Blood pressure that is considered high is when it is consistently at or above 140 over 90 [140/90]mmHg. You may wonder what mmHg is... Well, the easiest way to describe it is millimeters of Mercury, these are what the blood pressure is measured in.

Hypertension or high blood pressure has two categories, either 1. Primary -- which means blood pressure is high without a readily seen medical cause; or 2. Secondary -- which means the blood pressure is high due to conditions that may be affecting the kidneys, the heart, the arteries, or the endocrine system an arrangement of glands that secrete a regulating hormone directly into the bloodstream.

Why is it important for ethnic beauties to know whether or not they suffer from hypertension? ...Because it can put one at risk for having a stroke, or a heart attack -- a myocardial infarction. This condition may also, if unchecked, cause an aneurysm, arterial or even kidney disease, and sadly, in many it can and does cause a shortened life expectancy.

Is it possible to avoid hypertension, one may ask. In many cases, yes; changes in the diet and lifestyle can improve blood pressure. Seeing and following a doctor's orders can also decrease health risk-associations.

Why am I discussing this seemingly depressing topic? ...Because I would be remiss in my duties as your editor and friend if I did not give you --my ethnic family-- the truth; sometimes I simply must offer health information, hurtful or otherwise. And the truth is: we as ethnic people need to be aware that we are sometimes the first group to be diagnosed with hypertension. Why? For many reasons; stress can be a factor, or the high caloric meals we love can also be culprits. Foods that are no good can lead to other things...obesity and high cholesterol even. Ladies, please speak candidly with your doctor about the risk of taking birth control pills, if you have elevated pressure levels. Your physician may prescribe a progesterone pill instead of one with higher levels of estrogen. Discuss the risk factors of smoking too, if you do so.

Ethnic beauties, hypertension is something we want to watch out for, prevent, or manage -- if we must. As we get older, we realize, life throws many curves our way. However, we need to ask ourselves one question. Are we going to pretend we're uninformed, or are we going to be proactive? I pray we choose the latter, and work towards getting or remaining healthy.

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