Blood is the most universal fluid besides water in the human body. It carries oxygen and nutrients, serves as both a cooling and warming mechanism and carries away waste products. It simply is essential for the body to function and one method to analyze how well this process is occurring is blood pressure.
Blood pressure is the scientific measurement of how the blood is flowing from the heart to the rest of the body. Because the heart is a pump, the pressure on your veins and arteries is not constant. The pressure is higher with each beat of the heart and lower between beats. The maximum pressure when the heart is pumping is called the systolic pressure; this is the top number on your blood pressure reading. The lower pressure that occurs between beats is called the diastolic pressure and is the bottom number in a blood pressure reading.
Knowing your numbers is an essential aspect of evaluating your health.
Classification Systolic Diastolic
Normal <139mm Hg <89mm Hg
Borderline 140-159 90-94
Hypertension >160 >95
Keep in mind that your blood pressure can fluctuate due to a number of factors. Therefore, it is important that you standardize the way you measure your blood pressure. For example, after exercise or a large meal, your blood pressure is going to be significantly different than upon waking first thing in the morning.