Re: why is my blood pressure up first thing in the a.m.
Check your blood pressure both before and about 30 minutes after you eat, especially if you eat a fair amount of carbohydrate. Some people have post-prandial hypotension where eating causes their blood pressure to drop after meals or snacks. Since for most people the longest time without food would be in the morning, it would be logical for BP to be highest then. From what I've read it is almost unheard of for people in their 20s to have post-prandial hypotension (PPH), but as many as one-third of people over 65 may have it.
I have it and my systolic drops between 20 and 50 points after a meal. So far the only symptom I have from it is extreme tiredness after meals. But others, especially the very elderly on BP meds, may have dizziness, syncope and falls. There is also an association with strokes and a higher all-risk mortality. My doctor put me on only a low level of BP meds, only one-sixth as much as I was on formerly. It doesn't keep my BP under control over a 24-hour period, but she didn't want my BP to drop too much after meals. I have to try to eat often, but small amounts at one time. I also eat a little something when I awaken during the night. When I sleep straight through, though, or fail to eat when I wake up in the night, my BP can be really high in the morning. Food ends up being a better blood pressure "medication" than does the drug. Low-glycemic-load foods are preferred, as they cause a lower amount of drop in BP.
Post-prandial hypotension certainly isn't the only cause of higher BP in the morning, but it is one cause and I know many people are unaware of it. I'd encourage anyone who reads this and finds from their own BP checks that they have it to do a web search for the research on PPH. My own doctor knew next to nothing about it, and I'm guessing that such may be common for a lot of family doctors. Since there isn't a specific medication for it and having it may actually cause a doctor to prescribe less medication, the drug company reps certainly aren't going to be "educating" the doctors about it!