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Old 11-23-2007, 09:19 AM   #16
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Re: Anyone, after HBP diagnosis and lifestyle change, eliminate or drastically reduce

Quote:
Originally Posted by cartner View Post
I'm not an expert, it's my personal opinion which might be wrong. I'm sure that you are a great researcher.
Good luck,
Michael
I'm not any better of a researcher than anyone else on HBs. I've learned A LOT from the others.

I've just been in a nasty fight against Heart Failure for the past 20 years. If the disease doesn't get you, the medications will! Constant fatigue, lack of energy, lack of will, concentration problems, libido in the toilet, etc. I'm sure that most people who have heart disease, or take multiple heart medications know the routine.

I did not know that I suffered from chronically high blood pressure until after 11 years of Heart Failure. I always had my blood pressure taken, in the morning, at the cardiologist's office. I took my heart meds in the morning, so during the morning, my blood pressure was always nice and low. I didn't realize that my blood pressure was rising during the day, increasing to around 190/122 at night, and staying high all night long.

It was only after I suffered from increasingly bad symptoms, that I started taking my blood pressure at home. I was SHOCKED by the readings.

Now that my blood pressure is in at nice, healthy levels, I feel much, MUCH better and suffer from far fewer uncomfortable symptoms.
__________________
Greatly Improved CHF, A-Fib, HBP, Asthma:

⇒ Eliminate household items that are toxic!
⇒ Balanced, healthy, low glycemic diet
⇒ Lots of Exercise
⇒ Avoid night allergens, toxins
⇒ Coreg!

Last edited by Machaon; 12-07-2007 at 06:16 AM.

 
Old 11-23-2007, 09:59 AM   #17
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Re: Anyone, after HBP diagnosis and lifestyle change, eliminate or drastically reduce

Yes but not all people do that, most of the people just accept being sick and take all the medication, even they feel sick and having many side effects. You have created a database of your blood pressure readings, not everyone do this . You spent a lot of time researching and monitoring what effects you and in which way. This is extraordinary.
You make me believe that I can do control my health with minimal dose of drugs, thanks for your inspiration beerzoids.
Michael

 
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Old 11-24-2007, 06:45 AM   #18
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Re: Anyone, after HBP diagnosis and lifestyle change, eliminate or drastically reduce

Quote:
Originally Posted by cartner View Post
dmer,

I guess you are in 50s? can you tell me more about your diet and exercise regime?
Thanks,
Michael
Michael,

55 To be precise. My exercise regimen is pretty straightforward. 6 Days per week, I get up at 4AM and travel 4.6 miles over a route that rises very steeply for the first 1.3 miles - I walk that at a pretty brisk pace. It then flattens out and I run / jog for about 2 miles, walk down a very steep .3 miles and jog downhill for the last mile.

I've been walking and jogging this route on and off for years, but the long gaps have coincided with abandonment of any diet.

Since I had an inklling of high BP around mid October and had an official confirmation on October 24th, I upped the exercise to include the jogging portion and started to pay very close attention to my diet. I've kept daily diet logs in the past and was reluctant to do it again, but finally pushed myself to do so. For the last 9 days, my daily calorie intake has been in the range of 1600-2000, with most days now trending to the 1650-1700 level. This gives me a daily calorie "deficit" of approximately 1,000 calories (the amount needed to maintain my present weight).

Over a 7 day period, this adds up to 7,000 calories or 2lbs of weight. I estimate that with the exercise, I'm losing a little over 2lbs per week. It would be tempting to try a more rapid weight loss but I believe 2 lbs per week is in a healthy range.

On and off over the years, I have also lifted weights, usually in a gym. I've had enough gym memberships by now that have lapsed so I'm not joining another and will just use the simple weights I have at home.

I can tell you from past experience of being in poor physical shape how great it feels to progress to being in very good physical shape. You would be amazed at how this process works. Start slow with easily acheivable objectives that you frequently increase, in small increments and record what you do. I have a record that shows barely being able to walk a mile in 18 minutes to running 1 in 6minutes. Just cut the forest down one tree at a time.

<On a recent> NOVA program, they took a group of 12 out of shape people with various medical conditions and over the course of a year, trained them for the Boston Marathon.

It's very inspirational. These are average people, some showing conditions worse than what you read on this board.

Good luck!

Last edited by mod-anon; 11-26-2007 at 02:10 AM. Reason: do not instruct members on how to find websites.

 
Old 11-25-2007, 09:30 AM   #19
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Re: Anyone, after HBP diagnosis and lifestyle change, eliminate or drastically reduce

Quote:
Originally Posted by cartner View Post
Yes but not all people do that, most of the people just accept being sick and take all the medication, even they feel sick and having many side effects.
Worse yet, people STOP taking blood pressure medications, because of the side effects, and their bodies continue to be slowly damaged by the effects and causes of high blood pressure. To me, I am just as concerned about health damages from neurohormonals, as I am about the damages from the resultant high blood pressure.

The real sin is that doctors do not warn their patients about the interactions between medications and foods or drinks. But, in deference to doctors, most doctors just don't know about the interactions. If they "sampled" their own RXs, they would get a feeling for the nasty problems that their patients have with the medications, and, maybe, do something about it!

Quote:
You have created a database of your blood pressure readings, not everyone do this . You spent a lot of time researching and monitoring what effects you and in which way. This is extraordinary.
Thanks for the positive feedback. My blood pressure records, and notes, helped me get through my latest problem, I think. I have been lifting weights most of this year, and gradually building up the weight lifting sessions, with minor breathing, or heart rhythm difficulties. If you recall, I just complained about having difficulty breathing, after lifting weights. I also stated that my blood pressure was higher than normal this November.

I frequently introduce new foods into my diet, one at a time, to see the food's impact on my blood pressure, and to add additional healthy foods to my diet. Well...... I think that the latest food addition, had a negative impact on both my blood pressure, and the efficiency of my heart, and was causative to my after-weight-lifting breathing problems.

I've eliminated the food, and am back to lifting weights without a problem. It took a while to figure it out. I had to figure out, Were the breathing difficulties because of the change in season?........ a change in my environment?......... a salve I was using on my foot?........ eating too many potassium rich foods?

Quote:
You make me believe that I can do control my health with minimal dose of drugs, thanks for your inspiration beerzoids.
Michael
My pleasure. If anyone can do it, you can!

Regards, have fun getting ready for the Christmas season!
__________________
Greatly Improved CHF, A-Fib, HBP, Asthma:

⇒ Eliminate household items that are toxic!
⇒ Balanced, healthy, low glycemic diet
⇒ Lots of Exercise
⇒ Avoid night allergens, toxins
⇒ Coreg!

Last edited by Machaon; 11-25-2007 at 09:35 AM.

 
Old 11-25-2007, 10:37 AM   #20
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Re: Anyone, after HBP diagnosis and lifestyle change, eliminate or drastically reduce

Beerzoids,

I have always enjoyed your informative posts.

Is there a connection between breathing problems and diet? Do you experience breathing difficulties and heart rhythm irregularieties only with exertion? I am glad to hear they are gone for now! What do you figure was causing them? Surely not your food consumption!

flowergirl

 
Old 11-25-2007, 01:10 PM   #21
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Re: Anyone, after HBP diagnosis and lifestyle change, eliminate or drastically reduce

beerzoids, I told you . You are a great researcher, few can do that.

 
Old 11-27-2007, 07:40 AM   #22
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Re: Anyone, after HBP diagnosis and lifestyle change, eliminate or drastically reduce

Quote:
Originally Posted by flowergirl2day View Post
Is there a connection between breathing problems and diet?
There are quite a few connections between foods, or drinks, and breathing problems, heart irregularities, higher blood pressure and other health problems.

Quote:
Do you experience breathing difficulties and heart rhythm irregularities only with exertion?
When my heart failure was worse, the slightest effort caused breathing problems. Less than a minute of physical exercise or effort, would cause up to three days of breathing problems.

Most of my breathing problems and heart rhythm irregularities come from reactions to foods, drinks, pollens and other irritants, and interactions with, and between, medications.

Quote:
I am glad to hear they are gone for now! What do you figure was causing them? Surely not your food consumption!

flowergirl
I am on a very exacting, measured diet. I first posted on HBs at the beginning, of the evolution of my present diet, on Jan 2005.

[url]http://www.healthboards.com/boards/showthread.php?t=242229[/url]

That initial attempt at diet has evolved to where I now carefully measure my daily intake of proteins, carbohydrates, fats, potassium, calcium, etc., however I continue to do some fine tuning. My diet has been a major factor in my recovery from Heart Failure, High Blood Pressure, Heart Rhythm Irregularities, concentration problems, and breathing problems.

Consider food, drinks and medications the fuels that you use to run your body. The better the fuel, the better your body will run.

Take care, and have a great day!
__________________
Greatly Improved CHF, A-Fib, HBP, Asthma:

⇒ Eliminate household items that are toxic!
⇒ Balanced, healthy, low glycemic diet
⇒ Lots of Exercise
⇒ Avoid night allergens, toxins
⇒ Coreg!

Last edited by Machaon; 11-27-2007 at 07:42 AM.

 
Old 11-27-2007, 08:11 PM   #23
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Re: Anyone, after HBP diagnosis and lifestyle change, eliminate or drastically reduce

Beerzoids,

Quote:
My diet has been a major factor in my recovery from Heart Failure, High Blood Pressure, Heart Rhythm Irregularities, concentration problems, and breathing problems
Consider food, drinks and medications the fuels that you use to run your body. The better the fuel, the better your body will run
Wow!

Amazing! What an impressive success story! Thank you very much for sharing it.

Have you really stopped measuring your blood pressure? Stopping the readings and their recording in your charts and tables must have felt very strange, considering how numerous the daily readings had been.
Thank you for the link provided. I bookmarked the thread as it will take a while to read. I only read the last couple of entries with the updates. I wonder what "poisons" were affecting your health as per your findings. I would love to know if they were foods/products even the newly health-conscious people like myself consume.

Also thanks for giving me a different perspective on the medications I take. Instead of considering meds a necessary evil, I will try very hard to view them in a better light. You are right, of course. Just like the food, the meds keep some of us going.

flowergirl

Last edited by flowergirl2day; 11-27-2007 at 08:15 PM.

 
Old 12-06-2007, 03:21 PM   #24
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Re: Anyone, after HBP diagnosis and lifestyle change, eliminate or drastically reduce

Quote:
Originally Posted by flowergirl2day View Post
Have you really stopped measuring your blood pressure? Stopping the readings and their recording in your charts and tables must have felt very strange, considering how numerous the daily readings had been.
I averaged about two daily bp readings for October, but then in November, I was back up to seven readings per day because I tried some lifestyle changes, followed by having some environmental changes and also made some more changes to my diet. I also wanted to see if there was a seasonal "winter" effect on my blood pressure.

There is a surprising variety and complexity to the many different causes (triggers) of higher blood pressure and heart rhythm problems, and other immune system problems. I've been able to determine some of the normal triggers of heart rhythm problems, from the summary and detail reports of my several 24 hour Holters. Each hour, or so, while wearing the holter, I would test another suspected erratic heart rhythm trigger. But, my 23,000 blood pressure readings, reports, charts and notes, really helped me to learn what actually causes higher blood pressure and heart rhythm disturbances, but it was not easy, because there is absolutely no information, anywhere, about high blood pressure triggers, or triggers of heart rhythm disturbances.

The medical industry just keeps says that, for most cases, it doesn't know the causes of high blood pressure, PVCs, PACs, Palpitations, fibro, CFS, MCS, etc. To me, that is nonsense. They just don't want people to know, because keeping patients sick is much more profitable than healing them.

I have also reduced my Ace Inhibitor (now 34 days ago), by around 50&#37;, and want to monitor the effect on my blood pressure over the next few weeks.

So far, so good. For December, my average blood pressure, based on 224 readings, was 122/72. Last month it was 126/74 based on 221 readings. It's still a little early, to tell for sure, but it sure looks like, after 34 days, the Ace Inhibitor reduction has not negatively effected my blood pressure.

Thanks for asking!

I hope that you are doing great and are enjoying getting ready for the upcoming Christmas season. I love this time of year!

Take care.

Addendum 1/1/2008: It's now 39 days since I reduced my, already minimum dose of my Ace Inhibitor, by another 50%. No increase in blood pressure.

I've also cut my calcium channel blocker (CCB), by 25%, four days ago. No increase in BP. Too early to tell, but what amazes me is that I am not having any withdrawal problems!? I have ALWAYS had withdrawal problems.

I intend to stay on both the Ace Inhibitor and the CCB, for life. I know that, because of my health problems, I will always need the AceI and the CCB to help me to balance and stabilize my hormones. Once one's hormones are out of balance, it usually necessitates the use of blood pressure, or rhythm control medications FOR LIFE!

Also, my 24 hour blood pressure chart more clearly reflects the blood pressure drop after each one of my small meals or snacks. So...... if someone wanted to get their blood pressure a little bit lower, naturally, they could do it through frequent, small, appropriate meals. It's a mechanical result, because the body diverts blood to the stomach area, leaving less blood within the circulatory system, creating less blood pressure. Of course, and alas, the lowering effect of eating small meals is only temporary.

I think that I know, after 23000+ blood pressure readings, and associated research and analysis, over 9 years, that I will always have to take blood pressure medication. But, through exercise, and the "correct" changes to diet, environment and lifestyle, the medicine load can be reduced down to very small levels, which minimize both the costs, and the side effects of those medications. Sadly, it makes the drug industry unhappy, but I can't please everyone!

My average blood pressure for 2007 was 125.8 over 73.7 based on 2720 readings.

Addendum 1/20/2008: It's now 58 days since I reduced my, already minimum dose of my Ace Inhibitor, by another 50%. No increase in blood pressure.

I've further reduced my CCB by another 25%, so that my total weekly dose of both my CCB and my ACEI are significantly below the minimum recommended dosages. It's 21 days since I reduced my CCB by 25%, and it's 16 days since I additionally reduced my CCB down by another 25%, making the reduction a total of 50%!

And...... I've also reduced my Digoxin by about 15%, 25 days ago. All of these reductions in medication have not negatively effected either my blood pressure or heart rhythm/rate. I plan to cut my digoxin by another 15% on Weds, Jan 23rd, and then, if I experience a positive outcome for about 4 weeks, will determine then if a further reduction is appropriate.

I am convinced that our blood pressure can be used as an indicator, like the temperature gauge of a car, that tells us if our body chemicals are in balance. If our body chemicals are out-of-balance then, just like if a car's chemicals and fluids are out of balance. our car, or body, doesn't work very well, resulting in higher blood pressure and/or heart rhythm and rate problems and/or neurological problems and/or injury to our immune systems, etc.

So far, for the month of January, 2008, my average blood pressure is 122/72 based on 175 blood pressure readings, and heart failure or not, I feel great.

I have NEVER been able to successfully reduce my medications without major problems, and I have tried many, MANY times over the past 20 years of heart disease.

It begs the question, Why now? Why am I able to significantly reduce medications this time, and continue to experience healthy, low blood pressure, and an acceptable heart rhythm/rate, at my age with significant heart disease, and feeling good?!

It also begs the question: Why am I able to take heart medications, at significantly reduced and fewer dosages, and still be getting the same, significant benefit from the medications?? Could it be that my condition has improved due to environmental, lifestyle and dietary changes, and I need less mediation, or is the rate and dosage of medication somewhat related to drug company's profits?! I wonder.......

Perhaps, I've finally made enough changes to my diet, lifestyle and environment, that, with the help of minimal medications, my body is able to better tolerate the constant attack of poisons and triggers that cause overproduction of hormones and other body chemicals, which in turn cause higher blood pressure, and also cause increased heart rhythm problems. These excessive hormones and other body chemicals are also responsible for the worsening of other health problems such as Fibro and CFS and MS and LUPUS and MCS and Heart Failure and organ failure, etc.

Fascinating, isn't it? But what does it all mean?
__________________
Greatly Improved CHF, A-Fib, HBP, Asthma:

⇒ Eliminate household items that are toxic!
⇒ Balanced, healthy, low glycemic diet
⇒ Lots of Exercise
⇒ Avoid night allergens, toxins
⇒ Coreg!

Last edited by Machaon; 01-22-2008 at 08:47 AM. Reason: Able to significantly reduce medications, 1st time in 20 yrs!

 
Old 12-07-2007, 11:15 AM   #25
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Re: Anyone, after HBP diagnosis and lifestyle change, eliminate or drastically reduce

Do your arms get sore from all the readings? My arms got almost numb at one point & I couldn't even let the Dr. take a reading when I was at my point in taking readings. Fam

 
Old 12-08-2007, 08:58 AM   #26
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Re: Anyone, after HBP diagnosis and lifestyle change, eliminate or drastically reduce

Quote:
Originally Posted by famnd View Post
Do your arms get sore from all the readings? My arms got almost numb at one point & I couldn't even let the Dr. take a reading when I was at my point in taking readings. Fam
I get no pain or discomfort from taking my blood pressure, but it hurts my wife if it pumps up too much.

Have you ever tried a wrist bp monitor? They are not supposed to be as accurate as the arm bp monitor, but I imagine, if you used it at the exact same level each time, and if it didn't hurt you, perhaps it could give you a better way to monitor your blood pressure readings throughout the day.

Taking one's blood pressure many times per day, is the only trustworthy method of determining one's blood pressure cycle during the day, and a good method for the extremely difficult task of finding out which bp medications are the most effective, and the difficult task of discovering one's high blood pressure triggers. These "triggers" cause the production of excess hormones, which not only cause higher levels of blood pressure and increases in heart rhythm problems, but are also responsible for many of the problems associated with other immune system disorders such as CFS, Fibro, MCS, etc., IMHO.

Regards, and have a nice weekend!
__________________
Greatly Improved CHF, A-Fib, HBP, Asthma:

⇒ Eliminate household items that are toxic!
⇒ Balanced, healthy, low glycemic diet
⇒ Lots of Exercise
⇒ Avoid night allergens, toxins
⇒ Coreg!

Last edited by Machaon; 12-16-2007 at 08:13 AM.

 
Old 12-08-2007, 09:11 PM   #27
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Re: Anyone, after HBP diagnosis and lifestyle change, eliminate or drastically reduce

Quote:
Have you ever tried a wrist bp monitor? They are not supposed to be as accurate as the arm bp monitor
I don't know about Fam, but I almost bought one the other day. I was getting two Omron BP monitors (gifts for my sons) when I noticed and checked out the various wrist monitors. They cost only a little less than the conventional ones and I was very tempted. Because of the accuracy issue, I decided to purchase another regular Omron blood pressure monitor instead (as a backup) next time I visit this pharmacy.

 
Old 12-12-2007, 10:18 AM   #28
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Re: Anyone, after HBP diagnosis and lifestyle change, eliminate or drastically reduce

Quote:
Originally Posted by dmer View Post
I've read one account on the cholesterol board of a guy who got off meds after major lifestyle changes (weight loss, diet, exercise).

Given that the NIH describes someone with my BMI as obese, the surprise for me would have been a normal BP. At any rate, I would certainly harbor the hope that if my weight were in the normal range with corresponding diet and exercise, I could reduce the meds if not eliminate them.

Anyone reach such a point?
Since your post mentioned the cholesterol board, I wanted to post some more positive feedback about the effect of a healthy diet on cholesterol and glucose levels.

I could not take cholesterol medications because they caused me to have increased chest pains, heart rhythm problems and breathing problems.

During 2003, prior to dieting my total cholesterol readings were 249, 317 and 279 and my blood glucose was around 178.

In 2004, after four months of including more fiber in my diet, my total cholesterol was 240.

Near the end of 2004, I started on a diet, of small, frequent meals, targeting insulin resistance.

During 2005, my total cholesterol was 198, then 186.

During 2006, my total cholesterol was 178.

During 2007, my total cholesterol read 161, followed by another 161, and my blood glucose is now constantly at healthy levels.

So....... in my case, during 2-3 years of a proper, healthy diet I experienced a gradual lowering of cholesterol from unhealthy levels, higher than 250, to a much healthier 161. During that time, as I previously posted here, my blood pressure and my health also improved dramatically.

I don't know if those younger would have faster results than I had.
__________________
Greatly Improved CHF, A-Fib, HBP, Asthma:

⇒ Eliminate household items that are toxic!
⇒ Balanced, healthy, low glycemic diet
⇒ Lots of Exercise
⇒ Avoid night allergens, toxins
⇒ Coreg!

Last edited by Machaon; 12-12-2007 at 10:36 AM.

 
Old 12-12-2007, 11:58 AM   #29
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Re: Anyone, after HBP diagnosis and lifestyle change, eliminate or drastically reduce

Quote:
Originally Posted by beerzoids View Post
Since your post mentioned the cholesterol board, I wanted to post some more positive feedback about the effect of a healthy diet on cholesterol and glucose levels.

I could not take cholesterol medications because they caused me to have increased chest pains, heart rhythm problems and breathing problems.

During 2003, prior to dieting my total cholesterol readings were 249, 317 and 279 and my blood glucose was around 178.

In 2004, after four months of including more fiber in my diet, my total cholesterol was 240.

Near the end of 2004, I started on a diet, of small, frequent meals, targeting insulin resistance.

During 2005, my total cholesterol was 198, then 186.

During 2006, my total cholesterol was 178.

During 2007, my total cholesterol read 161, followed by another 161, and my blood glucose is now constantly at healthy levels.

So....... in my case, during 2-3 years of a proper, healthy diet I experienced a gradual lowering of cholesterol from unhealthy levels, higher than 250, to a much healthier 161. During that time, as I previously posted here, my blood pressure and my health also improved dramatically.

I don't know if those younger would have faster results than I had.
Thank you for that very useful information. When my BP reading was 220 / 130 on Oct. 25th, my weight was 271lbs (I'm 6.02", 55). The Dr. started me on Lotrel 5 / 20 and upped it to 10 /40 2 weeks later. Around the same time, my blood lipids showed;

TC: 270
Tri-G: 262
HDL: 37
LDL: 181
Glucose: 107

After those results, the Dr. added 40mg Pravachol.

I just had another series of blood tests on 12/10 and will discuss the results on 12/14 with the Dr. Since 10/25, I've lost approx 25lbs, through a diet limited to about 16-1800 calories per day and 6 days per week of exercise. My BP has dropped and readings are averaging much closer to normal. I

I'll post the chemical results when I receive them. One thing I have noticed though is that my hands are always cold and that is the opposite of my previous experience. In fact, I'm feeling a slight chill all the time!

If my lipid #'s drop, I'll ask the doc about possibly scaling back the meds and share the comments here.

Thanks again for the input!

 
Old 12-19-2007, 09:03 AM   #30
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Re: Anyone, after HBP diagnosis and lifestyle change, eliminate or drastically reduce

Quote:
Originally Posted by dmer View Post
When my BP reading was 220 / 130 on Oct. 25th, my weight was 271lbs (I'm 6.02", 55). The Dr. started me on Lotrel 5 / 20 and upped it to 10 /40 2 weeks later. Around the same time, my blood lipids showed;

TC: 270
Tri-G: 262
HDL: 37
LDL: 181
Glucose: 107

After those results, the Dr. added 40mg Pravachol.
220/130 must have scared the hell out of you!

I've never been that high, but years ago, when mine would frequently hit around 185/120, it was nervewracking. At that level, I would feel flushed, weak, rapid and weak heartbeat, and generally not too good.

What were your symptoms?

Quote:
I just had another series of blood tests on 12/10 and will discuss the results on 12/14 with the Dr. Since 10/25, I've lost approx 25lbs, through a diet limited to about 16-1800 calories per day and 6 days per week of exercise. My BP has dropped and readings are averaging much closer to normal.
Congratulations!

I think that many people just don't believe, or just don't want to believe that diet and exercise, alone, can have a significant impact on blood pressure. Hopefully, results such as yours and mine, will encourage others to do the right thing.

Quote:
I'll post the chemical results when I receive them. One thing I have noticed though is that my hands are always cold and that is the opposite of my previous experience. In fact, I'm feeling a slight chill all the time!
Interesting.

I live down in South Florida, and used to suffer, from the heat, when it would be in the 90's. Now, though, at 50 pounds lighter, I am quite comfortable in 90 degree weather. I didn't expect that to happen. OTOH, like you, I also feel the chill more when it is cool or colder out. LOVE IT!!!!

Quote:
If my lipid #'s drop, I'll ask the doc about possibly scaling back the meds and share the comments here.

Thanks again for the input!
Well...... how'd it go?
__________________
Greatly Improved CHF, A-Fib, HBP, Asthma:

⇒ Eliminate household items that are toxic!
⇒ Balanced, healthy, low glycemic diet
⇒ Lots of Exercise
⇒ Avoid night allergens, toxins
⇒ Coreg!

Last edited by Machaon; 12-19-2007 at 09:23 AM.

 
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