I hate going to the dentist. When I go, the first thing they do after you sit in the chair is they take your blood pressure. I don’t know if your dentist does that. The last few times I was there, I was in the range of 153 over 98, give or take a number. That was elevated signifcantly.
So after that happened a couple of times, I went to see my primary care doctor. When he put the thing on my arm, the reading was was 124 over 78. Not perfect, because the ideal is 120 over 80, but not bad.
What’s going on? Obviously, some things trigger your blood pressure. I don’t like being in the dental chair. But it could be any of a number of things for so many people: Weight, family issues, pressure on the job.
Get your blood pressure under control with this tip
Would you believe that exercise of any kind you can make big difference without medication?
A study out of Arizona State University finds that exercise of any kind — walking, running, light weights — can lower your blood pressure. And here’s the thing: It doesn’t have to be a lengthy exercise session. Even 10 minutes here and 10 minutes there of walking — even standing — can help.
That dovetails nicely with an item I read some time ago that said short bursts of exercise can be better for health than, say, a half-hour. So if the idea of 30-minute vigorous workout turns you off, try a 10-minute walk 3 times a day.
The highlight of the study was that working at a treadmill desk going 1 mile an hour for just 10 minutes every hour significantly reduces your blood pressure.
Best of all, exercise intensity doesn’t appear to play any role in reducing blood pressure. It’s just about getting moving at some pace. So get off your butt and go do something!
For more info for your wallet, see our Health section!