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Join Dr. McDougall along with fellow McDougallers in lively discussions and share your opinions.
VeganCarolyn wrote:Interesting reading about "white coat syndrome" at home..... it seems to me that when I have had a high reading I feel more anxious next time I'm checking it. I have been frustrated with needing to take bp meds while on a good McDougall diet. So two weeks ago I started monitoring and found that I was, on average, about 130/75. After a week of monitoring I reduced my meds in half, still monitoring at home, and for about five days I was fine. Now (nine days after reducing my meds) I am getting higher readings - the highest was 164/90 today (but yesterday I had a reading of 132/75). It could be sodium since I ate in a restaurant yesterday and today. I have the familial type of hypertension and have been on meds since age 38 (I am now 59). Does anyone here have any experience with reducing or eliminating bp medications when there is a very strong familial history of hypertension? My diet is very good, I exercise four to five times a week, and am 5'4" and weigh 135 pounds. Any input is appreciated!
VeggieSue wrote:I've been checking my BP at home for decades now and know all sorts of reasons why it may go up. A cold room, a hot room, not enough sleep, yawning during a reading, listening to something interesting on the tv or radio during a reading, fast music during a reading, wanting to speed up the reading because you have a zillion things to do, reading something upsetting just before a reading.
It's like I have to trick myself each morning when I take my BP. I have to keep something neutral on the tv or radio, like the weather and traffic station or some soothing music, the room temp has to be as close to 70 - 75 as possible, even if I have to wear a sweat shirt, nothing to drink but water in the times before taking it and nothing at all for at least a half hour before. I then take readings in both arms (mine are at least 10 points different in each reading), wait a few minutes and retake if unusually high or low.
I keep a simple chart in Excel that my son set up for me and bring this to the doc each time I go. I start a new chart after the visit, with the reading at the office as the first reading. The last column in my chart is for comments, and it's there I note any special conditions, like when I was up half the night coughing and sneezing with this cold recently, or a salty meal the night before. The doc loves to see those little comments because he gets a glimpse into my life in general and sees things I may have forgotten to mention during the visit, like last year when I was busy running around with an elderly relative who eventually wound up in a nursing home, then needed major surgery a month later. Naturally, my BP was up during all that and if I didn't mention the daily happenings in my BP chart he would have just seen my BP was high those days and think it was a trend and there was a medical reason for it and give me different meds. Instead he stressed to me how important it is to find stress relievers during that time and was instrumental in helping us get her the care she needed, first at home and then at the nursing home and hospital (His practice cares for her, too).
So keep that chart of at-home BP readings, and just relax about it. Do all you can to make it a routine thing in comfort rather than a rushed annoyance when you're at your worst and those readings will come down.
And do NOT take any supplements! Not unless you've had lab work done and it showed you have a deficiency in anything. Too much magnesium in your blood can throw your electrolytes off and cause sudden death from cardiac arrest, did you know that? Google it. Let your doctor do the prescribing, not a message forum or magazine article.
VeggieSue wrote:And do NOT take any supplements! Not unless you've had lab work done and it showed you have a deficiency in anything. Too much magnesium in your blood can throw your electrolytes off and cause sudden death from cardiac arrest, did you know that? Google it. Let your doctor do the prescribing, not a message forum or magazine article.
sbkris wrote:Our "former" Dr/friend prescribed a magnesium drip while my husband was in the ER with a heart attack. I was unhappy about the modern medical establishment before I read your comment veggie sue,(about magnesium causing cardiac arrest), but now, OMG!
what a quagmire....
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