Hypertension is the most common chronic medical condition amongst residents living in assisted living and residential care communities. As a provider you can help your residents manage hypertension by following their physician’s treatment and orders and assisting them to implement some of these interventions recommended by the CDC:
- Eat a healthy diet. Eating healthfully can help keep your blood pressure down. Eat lots of fresh fruits and vegetables, which provide nutrients such as potassium and fiber. Also, eat foods that are low in saturated fat and cholesterol.
- Avoid sodium by limiting the amount of salt you add to your food. Be aware that many processed foods and restaurant meals are high in sodium.
- Maintain a healthy weight. Being overweight can raise your blood pressure. Losing weight can help you lower your blood pressure.
- Be physically active. Physical activity can help lower blood pressure. The Surgeon General recommends that adults should engage in moderate physical activities for at least 30 minutes on most days of the week.
- Don’t smoke. Smoking injures blood vessels and speeds up the hardening of the arteries. Further, smoking is a major risk for heart disease and stroke.
- Limit alcohol use. Drinking too much alcohol is associated with high blood pressure.
- If you drink alcohol, you should do so in moderation—no more than one drink per day for women or two drinks per day for men.
- Prevent or treat medical conditions, such as diabetes.
Visit the CDC website for more information. Always follow physician orders and instructions.