Is high blood pressure affected by cold weather?
New research suggests that it is harder to lower high blood pressure in Winter than during the warmer months. The conclusion is understandable – people exercise more in summer and less in winter. Blood pressure is also affected when people gain weight during the cold – eating comfort foods and possibly “heavier” foods higher in salt, which when the recommended amounts are exceeded, is linked to high blood pressure.
Health advisers suggest not waiting for New Year to begin a healthy regime – the beginning of winter is an ideal time to watch the diet and find new ways to exercise and keep fit- see previous posts about keeping fit.
Although it is acknowledged that blood pressure was very variable – even on a minute by minute basis it was found that blood pressure levels and incidents of stroke and heart attack – are higher in cold winters.
Cold weather constricts the blood vessels but possibly more important is the way lifestyles change with the seasons.
Blood pressure tips for cold weather:-
- Begin gentle activities, be easy on your blood vessels and heart
- Dress in layers to keep warm and store your body heat.
- Cover exposed areas – a hat on the head, scarf around the neck and gloves will all keep out the cold.
- Find out if you have high blood pressure. Check your blood pressure regularly to see if you are winning the battle with blood pressure in cold weather