What is the number one risk factor for death — and how many of us are affected? Answer: high blood pressure, which affects 25 per cent of the UK population.
Also known as hypertension, it contributes to deaths from a large number of causes, including aneurysms, heart attacks, heart failure, stroke and kidney failure.
As you age, your blood pressure tends to get higher. This has led even doctors to assume that a high reading is an inevitable consequence of getting older — even though we’ve known for a century that this is untrue.
In the 1920s, researchers measured the blood pressure of 1,000 native Kenyans who ate a low-sodium diet centred around plant foods: whole grains, beans, fruits, dark leafy greens and other vegetables.
Bear in mind that normal blood pressure is 120/80. Anything above 140/90 is considered high.
Until the age of 40, the blood pressure of the rural Africans was similar to that of Europeans — about 125/80. However, by age 60, the average Westerner had high blood pressure, while that of the average Kenyan had actually improved.
High blood pressure, then, appears to be a lifestyle choice. You can continue eating the artery-bursting Western diet: or you can take the pressure off by simply changing your diet.
Source - Daily Mail