Just as the incidence of diabetes is increasing in India , so also the incidence of hypertension is increasing.a combination of overwqeight/obesity, diabetes or prediabetes , hypertension and dyslipidemia is commonly called as metabolic syndrome or syndrome X . And because of exponential increase in the incidence of obesity the incidence of Hypertension is also increasing.
Hypertension is also occurring in Indians at a younger age . Average age for getting hypertension in Indians is around 35 years whereas in the west the average age is 50-55 years. Also Indians tend to not get controlled by a single medications and may require 2 or more anti hypertensive for adequate control.and in clinical practice I am seeing more and more patients with hypertension at 20-30years of age . And many of them are not even obese or diabetic or having other risk factors like smoking or high cholesterol.
Hypertension can be primary or essential hypertension (in which no known cause is found)
Or secondary hypertension( which is due to some cause like kidney problem or hypothyroidism etc)
And young hypertensive tend yo have more often a secondary cause .So anybody and especially young hypertensives requies a group of tests to be performed to rule out any treatable cause.The tests includes certain blood tests , ECG, Echocardiography , stress test and sonography of abdomen and renal artery Doppler studies.
If the work up fails to identify a cause for hypertension it is labeled as essential hypertension.
Still what could be the likely reasons for essential hypertension?
Hereditary tendencies, a sedentary lifestyle ,lack of exercise, obesity or overweight , diabetes or high cholesterol(deranged lipid profile) ,smoking , heavy alcohol consumption , stress full life , type A personality are some of the factors attributed to essential hypertension. As yet some reasons probably have not been identified yet.
So what can you do to prevent or control essential hypertension?
First of all go to your doctor and do a detailed clinical examination and necessary investigations . and if your doctor deems necessary then start medications and control your blood pressure.next set on to correct whatever factors you have the power over like a sedentary lifestyle ,lack of exercise, obesity or overweight , diabetes or high cholesterol(deranged lipid profile) ,smoking , heavy alcohol consumption… discussed in previous paragraphs
I shall give some general guidelines
1) Go on to a low calorie,low fat , low sugar , well balanced diet for weight loss and cholesterol and sugar control.
2) If cardiac status is good (which your doctor will assess) then start aregular exercise regimen. Walking is best,low investment,can be done at anytime with no side effects. General rule is to do “low intensity long duration exercise” . however since we are talking about young hypertensives you can do jogging , swimming or even a spotrt like badminton , tennis etc(provided your doctor has cleared you cardiac status with ecg, echocardiography and stress test).