Thursday, January 29, 2009

Overweight Can Lead To High Blood Pressure

by: Zinn Jeremiah
Carrying excess body weight presents any number of risks to one's health. Though it's a debatable point, the greatest risk from being overweight may be the increased likelihood of developing high blood pressure. High blood pressure has earned the nickname "the silent killer" because though it's often asymptomatic, its effects can have a devastating impact on the body

A number of medical studies have established a correlation between people who are overweight and elevated blood pressure levels. As with anything else, there is variety in terms of how the effects are presented: specifically, the more overweight a person is, the more likely they are to have elevated blood pressure. In addition, an overweight person or a person who's obese has a higher tendency for elevated blood pressure than people who have a normal body weight. Whether a variation or not, the study outcomes provide mostly conclusive evidence that overweight and high blood pressure are linked.
Breaking it down into actual percentages, men who are obese have high blood pressure roughly forty-two percent of the time. Women who are obese have high blood pressure roughly forty percent on the time. While on their face these percentages may not seem outrageous, consider that men and women who aren't obese have high blood pressure only fifteen percent of the time roughly. Carrying too much body weight can then potentially triple the risk of high blood pressure.
The most relevant point is that being overweight is associated with elevated blood pressure, but just how this occurs is worthwhile information. Essentially what happens is people who are overweight tend to have higher blood sugar levels than normal, and their pancreas function produces extra insulin to cope with breaking down sugar in their bloodstream. The increased insulin production adversely affects several bodily functions: increased insulin can lead to blood vessels become thickened and rigid; excess levels of insulin can produce surges of adrenaline, which increases the physical functioning of the heart; and higher insulin levels can trigger the kidneys absorbing excess levels of water and salt.
The typical response to overweight is that it's a problem of appearance: dropping excess weight typically means an increased sense of body satisfaction. While body appearance can be meaningful to people, the risk of overweight is far more than just an issue of how one's reflection appears in a mirror. Overweight and obesity are legitimate threats to an individual's health and life, both from the risk of increased blood pressure as well as from other medical conditions.
About Author
Zinn Jeremiah is a freelance writer. Find help for weight loss by visiting


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