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FAQs About High Blood Pressure

By Dr. Brian Stone, MD, CEO, Clinical Diversity Solutions

What changes can I make in my diet to reduce my blood pressure?

Consider following the Dash diet plan. Dash stands for “Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension.” The diet is based on eating less fat and saturated fat. It recommends eating more fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. It recommends limiting alcohol consumption to reduce blood pressure. Limit your salt intake because blacks are more sensitive to sodium. If at all possible, eliminate processed food from your diet. (Cut back on the fast foods, French fries, chips, hot sauce, and soy sauce!)


I have high blood pressure, but the medications affect my erections. What can I do?

The most critical thing is that you control your high blood pressure. An erection is not much good if you die from a heart attack or stroke. That are certain medications that don’t affect erectile function. Discuss this with your physician immediately. Participate in reducing the risk factors for blood pressure by losing weight, changing your diet, engaging in cardiovascular exercise, reducing your alcohol intake, and eliminating tobacco.


What are the medications that are used to treat high blood pressure?

Sometimes diuretics (or water pills) are used to reduce the amount of fluid in your bloodstream and to eliminate extra salt. Other medications include calcium channel blockers, ACE inhibitors, and alpha-blockers. These keep your arteries from tightening, thereby increasing blood pressure. Beta-blockers block the effect of stress hormones (adrenaline) on your cardiovascular system. These hormones make your heart beat rapidly and harder, increasing blood pressure.


 
References:

DASH Eating Plan. (2021, January 4). NHLBI, NIH. Retrieved October 15, 2022, from https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/education/dash-eating-plan


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