Posts Tagged ‘high blood pressure’


March 26, 2014

Yep, that was me. Moron.

I knew full well I had a family history of hypertension (high blood pressure), diabetes, and risk of stroke, yet I did nothing to control my extremely high BP. At the time of my stroke it was 254/170. If not moronic, then selfish, as my family was left to deal with my poor choices.

Fortunately (or unfortunately, as should be the case), I am not alone. The number of obese people in the U.S. (including children) is alarming. High blood pressure is rampant and uncontrolled. The rate of onset type 2 diabetes and associated risk for heart attack and stroke are higher than ever. The internet revolution has made more people sedentary. Good company? I don’t think so.

If only. If only I had known better. If only I had known the risk of too much sugar. Or carbs. Or too much of anything. And the consequences of too little exercise.

Excuses, I know. I hid behind them too. That’s what being human is all about. We all make mistakes. But do we learn from them? Apparently not, as the cost of health maintenance continues to spiral out of control.

Solution? It begins with education. And regular visits to the doctor. It also helps to have a physician who is well-versed in nutrition, and is willing to take a holistic approach to the practice of medicine and prescribe to the patient exercise and a healthy diet, along with necessary medications. At your yearly physical exam, request extended blood tests. If your doctor questions this, find another doctor.

In the meantime, educate YOURSELF. Keep up with the latest information. Read labels. Check for side-effects of medications. Understand how OTC medicines and vitamins interact with what you eat. Be proactive; be conscious of your body. Be skeptical of anything said or written about food, medication, and exercise. Science and research changes and improves daily. Items that were once thought bad for you are no longer, and vice versa. Doctors used to recommend cigarette smoking to “nervous” patients. My, how things change! Knowledge is power.

Despite significant advances, Medicine still has a long way to go in knowing the workings of body and mind, and proper treatment of malfunctions. My advice: stay current, as many in the health profession do not. Hearsay and legends still exist and are propagated without control, thanks to social media.

Just because I was a moron in my past does not mean I have to continue down that path to self-destruction. I learned the hard way what bad habits can do to me and, unfortunately, to my family. Now, through this blog and elsewhere, I try to make my damaged life an example of how not to live your life, if you care anything about yourself and your loved ones.

Life is what you make of it. Live and learn.