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Old 11-13-2004, 02:12 AM   #1
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Question Question for zuzu

Hey...

I ask you zuzu because you seem to be quite knowledgeable about this stuff. Anyway, onto the question.

Exercise lowers blood pressure. Why? If it lowers the BP, is it just a temporary thing that will expire in few weeks/months after the cessatation of exercise or does it really reset your "resting" value to a lower one?

I feel my BP is not all it could be and that I could lower it some, but am afraid to start an exercise program because 1) my BP will be really high during exercise and I'll hurt myself and 2) that it won't last and it will just return to whatever it was pre-exercise once I stop exercising (for any reason).


I feel pretty relaxed right now, I just tested my BP and it's 121/71. It's readings like the one I just did that make me feel depressed, hopeless (because of the 2 things I mentioned above), and the desire to keep checking my BP day after day. Is it just the anxiety/obsession that is making it slightly elevated? I feel calm, but could it still be the obsession? Is it likely? I know 121/71 is not bad at all, but I like it to be 115/75 or lower and if it's not, I'm upset.

There again, tested and now its 125/75. I felt calm that time. Again a few mintues later, 106/71. I feel very happy and pleased with the latter reading, but CANNOT convince myself that is my BP. So, I test for validity by testing again in a few minutes -- so, I am about ready to start another test and a slight rush of anxiety heeby jeebys come over me and I get 138/67. Around and around we go. One last a few more minutes later, 115/60. WHICH IS IT?!? GAH.


I'm sick of checking my BP, but find it _extremly_ hard to stop.

I hope I made some sense.
Thanks for any replies.

 
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Old 11-14-2004, 10:08 AM   #2
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Re: Question for zuzu

Naes,
You are obviously feeling overly anxious about your health but it's normal for your BP to fluctuate from moment to moment when you are in such a state of heightened alert!

All your readings show a labile (but nothing to be concerned about) systolic (the # most easily affected by anxiety,) and a wonderful diastolic.

Exercise would be a great thing for you to get back into..not only for the overall cardiovascular benefits but it'll do wonders for your anxiety level. Really.


When you exercise, blood flow to working muscles increases tremendously, which causes first, an immediate drop in blood pressure. THEN the body responds quickly, and your heart rate and cardiac output increase to maintain your BP at a healthy level. Because your body diverts blood to working muscles, exercise will typically raise blood pressure, but this effect is only temporary.

Then later, after exercising, blood pressure can fall just as dramatically because when the muscles stop contracting, there is no longer a pump to send blood back to the heart. The heart responds by lowering cardiac output, and blood pressure drops.

Also, metabolic byproducts, like lactic acid, stay for a while in the bloodstream, and this causes blood vessels in the muscle to remain dilated. This allows blood flow in these areas to remain high, resulting in a fall in blood volume of the heart, which lowers BP.

ALSO, when your body temperature increases with exercise, the blood vessels in the skin dilate in order to lose the extra heat. This also reduces blood volume in the heart.

To put your mind at ease, you should know that even though BP can increase somewhat during exercise and stay up temporarily for a while after exercise, your #s do not pose any danger whatsoever and there is evidence that repeated exercise will gradually lower resting BP over time.

But whatever your blood pressure, it's hard to go wrong with walking. Some studies says that moderate aerobic exercise like walking may be more effective in the long-term lowering of resting blood pressure than even running!

zuzu xx

 
Old 11-14-2004, 12:18 PM   #3
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Re: Question for zuzu

So, my systolic is labile because of anxiety? My friend tested his BP and it was 123/73 then 111/68 the next few minutes. So, that's a pretty big change in systolic hence labile? Is everyones labile?

Here's what I got in a session of testing just now: 111/66, 120/66, 117/63, and 110/69 -- I think everyones changes that much, doesn't it? It bouncing around to 138 and back down to 120 is probably just the anxiety?

Thanks zuzu.

Last edited by naes; 11-14-2004 at 12:59 PM.

 
Old 11-14-2004, 12:59 PM   #4
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Re: Question for zuzu

Not everyone's...But if you are anxious it is! Many factors can cause labile BP in susceptible individuals apart from anxiety.
Temperature changes, hunger, or a heavy meal, fatigue, exercise, smoking, (how about LIFE!!?? )

Also, if your BP monitor is very sensitive, it'll pick up the slightest thing..even crossing one's legs while taking your BP can affect the systolic greatly. So can talking, body movement, or tensing of the arm.

What monitor do you have and how exactly do you take your BP?

You should take 3 readings in one sitting 2-3 minutes apart. Throw out first # and average the last 2. Use same arm. Sit with feet on floor, arm relaxed and limp supported on a table, palm up. Your back should also be supported. Wait at least a 1/2 hour after food, exercise or smoking.

zuzu xx

Last edited by zuzu8; 11-15-2004 at 01:05 AM.

 
Old 11-14-2004, 01:01 PM   #5
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Re: Question for zuzu

Yes, that's how I take it. I have an OMRON 741CREL.

EDIT: I read that people with "labile hypertension" usually get headaches and ringing in ears a lot (I rarely get either) and they will have high BP during emontial stress (I would think we all have it then because it seems sooo common for BP to go up during emotionally stressful situations). Those last 4 readings I gave you I was feeling anxious, but it didn't seem raise the BP. This happens sometimes, but othertimes does not and I'm not sure why.

Here is some more results (subsequent, each 2 mintues apart and testing correctly): 117/60, 117/65, 120/67, and 114/62.

I'm just not sure why it jumps around a lot sometimes but othertimes ALWAYS remains right around the same thing regardless of emotions. When I am feeling worried and it does effect the results, it goes back down when I'm calm again. Usuallllyyyy the systolic doesn't rise above 135 when feeling excitied, but as you've seen it does sometimes (isn't it like that with everyone?).

I don't think I have any form of hypertension (especially at my age/weight/heredity) based on what I've seen over the past months (only time I see major changes are with exertion and emotions -- foods, drinks, etc. don't raise my BP much at all, afaik), but I'm still not _sure_ and I don't know what to do to be _sure_.


Thanks again zuzu.

Last edited by naes; 11-14-2004 at 02:43 PM.

 
Old 11-14-2004, 09:13 PM   #6
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Re: Question for zuzu

Naes,

These last results you just posted should reassure you and would absolutely, positively, definitely delight any physician.
Try to stop obsessing!

Accept the fact that BP fluctuates and sometimes we don't know why...But your #s are for the most part absolutely textbook perfect.
I mean it.


zuzu xx

 
Old 11-14-2004, 09:50 PM   #7
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Re: Question for zuzu

.... okay I'll do my best to stop obsessing :| It's so hard. Thanks again for your replies. One last question, are you a doctor? You know a lot.

 
Old 11-15-2004, 04:05 AM   #8
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Re: Question for zuzu

Hey Doc Zuzu,

Great advice as always .

For Naes just an FYI about excercise. Excercise is great for so many other reasons than BP and heart issues. For me excercise is a way of life. It helps my physical, mental and emotional well being. I find it sad that people take better care of their cars than their own bodies. You owe it to yourself to love yourself through excercise. I know when I miss several workouts I feel lousy in more ways than just physical.

Excersise for me lets me perform at the top of my game in all areas of my life (being a mom, a wife, a daughter, a friend and a good manager at work). The health benefits are an added bonus not too mention you look younger and feel younger, and we are all searching for that fountain of youth. No need to look any further we have the key all we need to do it put it in the door. Sorry for the seminar, and have a great day..Lisa

 
Old 11-15-2004, 07:05 AM   #9
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Re: Question for zuzu

Your #'s are great. Everyone's B/P fluctuates.... especially from the 1st reading to the 3rd one. Relax & stop thinking about it so much. Those #'s are great. I'm going to stop obsessing. If I had a machine, I think that I would donate it to Goodwill. Once a week will be enough for me for a while. It gets to be a bad obsession. Docs. shouldn't scare the living ****** out of us. Pretty soon it will show that 50% of the population is on B/P meds. & many of them don't need to be on them. I will read intelligent articles about white-coat, blood pressure & etc. Living in fear & being obsessed about taking your B/P is no way to live.

 
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