New campaign highlights brain health risks of high blood pressure
To raise awareness of the dangers of high blood pressure, the National Institutes of Health's National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) has organized a public health education campaign called "Mind Your Risks," specifically highlighting how high blood pressure and other risk factors can lead to stroke and cognitive decline.
"We hope that this campaign will lead people to think about how they can decrease their chances of developing dementia later in life," said Walter J. Koroshetz, M.D. director of the NINDS, in a press release. "The Mind Your Risks campaign will offer some concrete prevention steps. Controlling hypertension is at the top of the list."
To bring this campaign to the public, NINDS has partnered with several other government agencies, including Million Hearts, an initiative by the Health and Human Services Department,as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and also the Administration for Community Living, National Institute on Aging and the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.
The partnerships behind Mind Your Risks will also provide new research on Alzheimer's and other forms of dementia in hopes of finding cures and preventative measures. Already, the campaign has begun spreading information about vascular dementia, a form of dementia that is likely preventable by avoiding high blood pressure. Vascular dementia usually develops after the brain endures multiple strokes, including small, unnoticeable ones that occur as we age. High blood pressure weakens the arteries and brings on these strokes.
When it comes to prevention and treatment, some patients require blood pressure control medication prescribed by a doctor, but steps can be taken long before there is a real problem. Lifestyle changes like exercising, managing your weight and quitting bad habits like smoking can prevent the high blood pressure that causes strokes and cognitive decline.
Making healthy changes to your diet can also help prevent high blood pressure. One of the leading contributors to high blood pressure is excess sodium. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently reported that as many as 89 percent of adults in the U.S. consume too much sodium on a daily basis. Currently, the recommended sodium limit is 2,300 milligrams per day.
To combat this widespread issue, experts from the American Heart Association have recommended reducing sodium content in all manufactured food. One way to accomplish this is by using a salt replacement, like seaweed. Research from Sheffield Hallam University found that Seagreens wild Wrack seaweed is a viable alternative to salt, containing only 3 percent sodium compared to salt's 40 percent but maintaining all the same flavor.
To reduce your sodium consumption and risk of high blood pressure, try using Seagreens Mineral Salt. Every Seagreens product contains all the minerals, micronutrients, trace elements and vitamins that can be found in all-natural, organic seaweed. Seagreens organic wild wrack seaweeds are produced to the company's award-winning proprietary standard (patents pending) among Scotland's remote Western Islands in pristine Grade A waters. All Seagreens products are organic, kosher and certified free from allergens and contaminants.