Nutritionalsupport for patients with Hypertension
Nutritionalsupport for patients with Hypertension
Hypertensionremains one of the most prevalent chronic medical conditions. It is adisease that leads to the elevation of blood pressure within thearteries. Hypertension has become a global health problem as itaffects both developing and developed nations. The high incidencerates can be attributed to the increased longevity and unmonitoreddiets. Nutritional support minimizes the chances of increased bloodpressure and Hypertension (Sharafedtinov & Mikelsaar, 2013). Itshould therefore be highly encouraged for patients with Hypertension.Unfortunately, evidence relating the effects of nutritional supporton Hypertension control among patients with high blood pressure hasnot been analytically reviewed. This paper offers direction on theconcepts and the new trends related to nutritional support forpatients with Hypertension.
Ithas been proven that nutritional support is an intervention againstthe progression of chronic medical conditions, and Hypertension isnot an exemption. Hypertension is a malignant ailment that leads toprogression in cerebrovascular and cardiovascular failures, renalmorbidity, and even death. The need for nutritional support isnecessitated by the fact that conventional medications used for thecondition cause severe side effects, such as diarrhea and kidneyproblems, to most patients. On the other hand, consideringalternative remedies in the form of nutritional supplementsencourages good health because of the absence of side effects(Weisbrod & Seta, 2013).
Dietarysupport has crucial roles in the control of blood pressure. Theeffect of nutritional support varies from one patient to another.However, because many elderly patients have body mass indexes beyond26, their nutritional requirements should be considered more keenlyas opposed to the case of younger patients. Due to the severity ofhypertension, strong evidence encourages the adoption of diets richin potassium, low alcohol, and high fiber content. Reduced intake ofalcohol should always be the key factor for any projected positiveoutcome of dietary measures. Hypertension has a direct connectionwith consumption of alcohol and the relationship is independent of apatient’s body weight. In many cases of Hypertensive elderlyindividuals, intake of alcohol represents a compelling source ofcalories (Sharafedtinov & Mikelsaar, 2013). As a result, arestriction against alcohol can cause a twofold impact on bloodpressure. First, it can lead to general weight reduction because ofthe reduced consumption of calories. Secondly, it is a way ofdeterring the weight-related consequences of alcohol in the body.
Asa whole, patients are encouraged to adopt DASH diets since theyentail Hypertension free foods such as vegetables, fruits, nuts,fish, and whole grains. Equally, DASH routine encourages sodiumrestriction because of the evidence of its accompanying detrimentaleffects on elderly patient populations. Another assumed fact is thatirregular consumption of licorice and coffee by the elderly increasesthe possibility of amplified hypertension. Therefore, since olderpatients may be at risk of these lifestyle routines, healthpractitioners need to monitor them (Weisbrod & Seta, 2013).Theuniqueness of elder nutritional needs makes it important for medicalprofessionals to use pharmacological supplements on them.
Physiologyof the elderly
Hypertensiontends to be more prevalent among the elderly population than in theyoung individuals. This age disparity factor is highly pronounced inold people because, after the age of 45, blood pressure becomessignificantly elevated. The frequencies of hypertension growdramatically because of various factors including the decline ofoestrogen amongst women. Biologically, body weight in generalincreases with an individual’s age. In many demographic researches,levels of blood pressure have been confirmed to have a directrelationship with body weight. In this view, since most elderlyindividuals are overweight, hypertension is highly prevalent amongthem and is usually hard to monitor. In recent studies on olderpopulations, waist circumference and body mass indicated a directbearing on the occurrence of hypertension in addition to theheightened blood pressure (Weisbrod & Seta, 2013).
Furthermore,regular aerobic workout has been linked to blood pressure control inhypertensive patients. However, exercise has not been effective amongthe elderly because of their inability to handle the strenuousfacets. Systolic blood pressure is considerably lower among personsmoving frequently than among those who are mostly immobile, includingthe elderly. The long-term advantage of physical exercise is that ithelps in preventing or reversing arterial toughness and facilitatesblood flow (Sharafedtinov & Mikelsaar, 2013). In addition,aerobic exercise raises the level of high-density lipoproteins andreduces the overall risk of cardiovascular failures. It is ofparticular significance in hypertensive elderly patients.
Factorsaffecting nutrition in elderly
Themajor factor that has great bearing on nutrition in elderlyindividuals is the loss of appetite. As people age, they developdeprived appetite and tend to eat less. This makes it difficult forthem to get all the necessary nutrients. Additionally, adults overthe age 45 years have high blood pressure due to inability to chewmost nutritious meals. Similarly, there are issues related tofinances. Senior populations who live on fixed wages may not have theability to pay for the nutritious meals needed to sustainblood-pressure-free health. For older citizens with transportation ordisability issues, access to nutritious meals is always a challenge.Also, seniors suffer because they are unable to absorb nutrientscompletely due to their age-linked metabolic changes. For example,deficiency of Vitamin B12 is common since the digestive tracts ofolder adults do not absorb the vitamin sufficiently (Weisbrod &Seta, 2013). This leads to an increase in the risk of high bloodpressure and consequential hypertension.
Asthe production of estrogen goes down, older women lose their bonemass, and this increases the possibility of high blood pressure.Annual declines of 3 percent per year take place in the first yearsof menopause. Consuming adequate amounts of calcium may help slow therate. On the other hand, prostate diseases are more prevalent inelderly men and this is why diets low in calories and fats and highin vegetables and fruits may serve in preventing increased bloodpressure (Weisbrod & Seta, 2013).
Medicallyapproved dietary approaches are recognized to be useful in minimizingblood pressure and consequential hypertension. However, because ofthe complexity of patient features, risk factors, and hypertensionpathogenesis, the nutritional support program needs to beindividualized based on the patient’s understanding of his diseaselevel. The significance of dietary control in the management ofhypertension is that it reduces the risk of other conditions. Aheart-friendly diet is recommended for patients of all ages. However,it is especially crucial for old age as it is when there is a highrisk of heart diseases. Diets that keep a patient free from bloodpressure are those that can limit saturated salts and fats. Thesefoods should be adopted and they include potassium-rich nourishments,such as low-fat milk and bananas. More importantly, fat caloriesshould be restricted to between 21 and 36 percent of a senior adult’sdiet.
Sharafedtinov,K. K., & Mikelsaar, M. (2013). Hypocaloric Diet Supplemented withProbiotic Cheese Improves Body Mass Index And Blood Pressure Indicesof Obese Hypertensive Patients-A Randomized Double-BlindPlacebo-Controlled Pilot Study. Nutrition journal, 12(1),1.
Weisbrod,R. M., & Seta, F. (2013). Arterial Stiffening Precedes SystolicHypertension in Diet- Induced Obesity. Hypertension, 62(6),1105-1110.