We’ve all heard about the risks of high blood pressure and how it can negatively affect our health. High blood pressure has for a long time been identified as a leading cause of heart attack and stroke, two of the leading causes of death in Ireland.
A recent study carried out by the Irish Pharmacy Union across 68 community pharmacies found that in 1,100 members of the public ages 50 and older, one in four (or 27%) were identified as having high blood pressure.
How can I lower my Blood Pressure?
While most people are aware of the benefits of exercise for their health, a recent study has suggested that exercise could be as effective as drugs at reducing high blood pressure. The study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, pooled the data from 194 previous clinical trials assessing the impact of drugs on lowering systolic blood pressure, and 197 trials looking at the impact of structured exercise involving nearly 40,000 people.
When the results were restricted to those with high blood pressure, it was shown that exercise seemed to be just as effective as drugs in lowering blood pressure. The study also found “compelling evidence” to suggest that when mixing exercises such as walking, running, swimming or cycling with strength and resistance training, this seemed particularly effective in lowering blood pressure.
How much exercise do I need?
Aura Leisure fitness professionals recommends 30 minutes of exercise twice a week to significantly improve health and fitness for anybody beginning an exercise plan. Thereafter, slowly increasing the duration and frequency of your exercise, anywhere up to 150 min a week will have further and greater benefits in lowering blood pressure.
According to the study ‘there is comprehensive evidence that moderate levels of physical activity can help prevent disease, improve quality of life and promote physical and mental health.’ Walking is the most common and most accessible activity for everyone and brisk walking for 150 minutes per week is enough to meet the recommended guidelines and improve your health.
Make a small change this year to make it a Healthier and Happier Ireland in 2019!
To get started on your fitness journey why not join Aura Leisure now! For details on our membership options visit www.auraleisure.ie