Disease Info

Hypertension

Blood pressure in medical terms means the blood pressure measured at the upper arm of a patient at the brachial artery.It is indicated by two numbers: systolic pressure(heart beats)and diastolic pressure (heart relaxation).It is commonly accepted that the normal blood pressure is 120(systolic) over 8 (diastolic).The blood pressure tends to fluctuate during the day. Hypertension is diagnosed, when high blood pressure prevails over the course of the day. It is the main cause of atherosclerosis, which hardens the blood vessels. Other complications include kidney disease, blindness and congestive heart failure.A person with the blood pressure exceeding the indications of 140/90 most of the time is believed to have hypertension. Most people over 65 years old will develop hypertension.

Causes

There are various causes of high blood pressure. This condition can be caused by another medical condition.So a combination of causes will lead to the real problem with blood pressure.It is also natural to have higher blood pressure when one puts on more weight. While a person might now feel any discomfort, it is advisable to maintain a healthy weight for your constitution type. So, greater weight being one of the causes due to the greater amount of blood produced for bigger bodies. Lack of physical activity will also lead to increased heart rate and hence higher blood pressure. Smoking being one of the risk factors, as it also speeds up the heart rate and damages artery walls. Fluid retention, caused by dietary habits (high sodium or low potassium) and hormonal changes, is also of a high risk. Alcohol is always one of the main dangers for health. Age and family history of hypertension also might increase your chances of getting it. Intake of certain drugs, hormones or herbs can result in high blood pressure as well.

Ayurvedic approach

In Ayurveda hypertension is known as Rakta Gata Vata. It is the imbalance of all three doshas that lead to this condition. The causes of hypertension can be found in the diet of patients. Ayurveda believes that impaired digestion is the root cause of hypertension. Food containing preservatives and chemical, hard to digest food (such as animal proteins) will lead to indigestion, difficulties with digestion and flushing the toxins. Ama or toxins will accumulate in one’s body over time. This will block the digestive fire from burning the toxins and producing nutrient plasma. This plasma is aimed to nourish al body tissues and helps to produce purified healthy blood. With poor digestion nutrient plasma will produce ama, making the blood dirty or heavy. This blood can narrow the channels of the heart. Heavy and sticky blood cannot circulate properly and the heart should work harder to pump it through the channels, this will lead to hypertension. This is the main cause of high blood pressure, which however might be more possible to the family history, obesity, wrong diet, low fitness levels and large intake of heart stimulants like caffeine.

Since the poor digestion is at the root of the disorder, Ayurveda will first cleanse the bodt through Panchakarma treatment and only then when the digestion fire can be strong, will target the toxins blocking the arteries. All this should come in a complex with stress eradication, healthy lifestyle and mental health. Since animal proteins especially meat and eggs and recently the fish, will produce more ama in one’s body, it is crucial to exclude them from the diet. Same goes to any pickled food, salty products, caffeine containing products, preservatives. The more detailed diet and lifestyle advice can be given by your Ayurvedic doctor/Vaidya based on your pulse diagnostics. Here at Vaidya Nithi’s we discourage patients from blindly following diet advices and diet plans without prior consultation with doctors and/or vaidyas.