#20 Get adequate sleep (62 non-drug ways to control blood pressure)

Old folk lore says that 1 hour before midnight worth 2 hours after, an hour nap during the day when you feel tired is worth 2 hours at night.    I believe this is somewhat true.  Unfortunately our work worlds are still pretty primitive in terms of allowing folks to sleep in the morning, or to take naps at work.  This becomes relevant in that insufficient sleep appears to be a cause of high blood pressure.

“Science Daily (June 11, 2009)  Middle-aged adults who sleep fewer hours appear more likely to have high blood pressure and to experience adverse changes in blood pressure over time, according to a report in the June 8 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.”

“Each hour of reduction in sleep duration was associated with a 37 percent increase in the odds of developing high blood pressure.”

While we are on the topic of sleep, there is this thing known as sleep apnea.  Roughly, with sleep apnea, folks have trouble breathing or stop breathing in their sleep.  In this case, the body has to wake-up to get the breathing going again.  This means that rest isn’t proper.  In ways not totally understood this impacts blood pressure big time.  During your sleep your blood pressure is suppose to drop about 20%.    It could be that those with apea problems aren’t getting this restful time period when blood pressure resets to lower values.    Sleep deprivation is also known to cause significant blood pressure elevation.


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