The Connection Between High Fitness Levels and Hypertension Risk

Hypertension Risk and high fitness level

There is really no debate that being physically fit is wholly beneficial to a person’s overall health. However, new research is more precisely pointing to the fact that an adequately high fitness level might actually reduce a person’s hypertension risk.

Indeed, there seems to be a clear connection between a person’s physique and his or her blood pressure. Still, a lot of people just do not understand how one can affect the other. When it all boils down, educating yourself on the matter can ultimately help you to motivate yourself to work out more often or more strenuously.

Understanding Normal Blood Pressure

On average, an adult human being should have a blood pressure of about 120/80 or below. Unfortunately, there are lots of people in the modern world who constantly deal with an out-of-control blood pressure level. Normal blood pressure requires a fit cardiovascular system, which can only be achieved through proper physical activity such as exercise. In fact, those who lead a more sedentary life or who do not do cardio at least once per week are more likely to suffer from an increased hypertension risk than are those who have a high physical fitness level.

An Increasingly Serious Problem

According to the most recent scientific polls conducted by the American Heart Association (AHA), nearly 80 million people have a serious hypertension risk. Interestingly, about a third of American adults actually have noticeably high blood pressure, a condition that could lead to heart attack, stroke, or even death. Since the rising cost of health care often prevents people from getting the medical attention they need, understanding viable ways of reducing a person’s hypertension risk is important to saving lives from a preventable disease.

Successfully Exercising Some Risk Away

It turns out that getting enough physical activity each day actually does do more than make your butt look better in your jeans. It is now a fact that you can exercise the hypertension risk away if you do it just right. High fitness levels are closely associated with providing adequate protection to specific (and important) parts of your body. This is what ultimately prevents certain health problems, such as obesity, depression, hypertension, heart disease, and much more. In order to stay healthy now and in the future, attaining a high level of physical fitness is imperative. Talk to your cardiologist if you are unsure which workouts are safe for you.

Factors that Increase Hypertension Risk

Other than having a very high fitness level, there are many other factors that can – and are more likely to – boost hypertension risk.  It’s important to know them if you want to keep those chances under control.  If you’re unsure about your own risk factors, it never hurts to contact your doctor to better understand your own unique health, and the way your lifestyle plays a role in it.  Many risk factors are quite common and can be overcome with some minor tweaks to your daily habits.

High Body Weight

Being overweight or having obesity can easily boost your hypertension risk.  The reason is that the more there is to your body, the more your circulatory system will need to boost its blood flow to make sure every tissue and cell receives the oxygen and nutrients they need to stay alive and functioning.  The greater the blood volume circulating through your body, the bigger the pressure inside your arteries that are being forced to work harder to get the job done.

Overcoming this factor means gradually reducing your body weight through healthy changes such as nutrition, physical activity, sleep and stress control.

Sedentary Lifestyle

When you’re not physically active enough on a regular basis, it increases your hypertension risk.  The reason is that exercise raises blood flow through all the body’s arteries.  This triggers the release of various hormones and cytokines.  Those work in the body by relaxing the blood vessels, reducing your blood pressure.  Of course, living a sedentary lifestyle also increases your risk of excessive body weight, which is a factor we’ve already discussed.  This means that being physically inactive on a regular basis is both a direct and indirect risk factor.

Drinking Excessive Amounts of Alcohol

Having more than one drink per day if you’re a woman or two if you’re a man can be a substantial hypertension risk factor.  It is believed that this occurs because the adrenergic nervous system is activated through excessive alcohol consumption.  This constricts blood vessels but boosts heart rate and blood flow, leading to higher blood pressure.

What to Do if You Think You Have Hypertension

If you think you may have hypertension, it is always recommended that you speak with your doctor.  This is a very treatable but very serious condition.  You may be advised to take on certain lifestyle changes that will allow you to naturally overcome your risk or you may be prescribed medications to help you control it right away while you make those changes to benefit you over time.

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