To investigate whether helping others can help seniors maintain their own blood pressure at healthy levels, researchers at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh studied the effects of volunteer work on 1,164 adults between the ages of 51 and 91.
The research team first interviewed the study participants in 2006, when all had normal blood pressure. Based on data collected at the follow-up interview and blood pressure measurement four years later, in 2010, the investigators reported that those seniors who devoted 200 hours per year to volunteer work were 40 percent less likely to develop high blood pressure than the seniors in the study who didn’t volunteer.
The specific type of volunteer work didn’t appear to matter, the researchers, said. The most important factor was the amount of time spent – 200 hours per year. The investigators concluded that their study results “give older adults an example of something that they can actively do to remain healthy and age successfully.” The study was published by the American Psychological Association’s Psychology and Aging journal.
My take? This is a welcome example of how fostering human relationships can affect health in a positive way. I believe that unless we experience meaningful connections to others, we put ourselves at risk of developing spiritual, mental and, ultimately, physical illness.
Regular opportunities in the community include feeding the homeless; helping people with terminal illnesses; and helping to clean up the environment. If you don’t feel that you want to get formally involved with an organization, you can always do things on your own, such as helping shut-ins, offering transportation to elderly or disabled neighbors and tutoring or reading to children.
The possibilities are endless. Once you take that first step I’m sure you’ll find that your service work quickly becomes one of your more rewarding healthy habits.
How progesterone can help:
In women, oestrogen dominance and oral contraceptives are the major cause of hypertension. Oestrogen and Progestins adversely affect cell membranes resulting in sodium and water influx into cells (causing water retention) and loss of potassium and magnesium. In women not on the Pill it is usually associated with Progesterone deficiency.
When supplemental progesterone is used the weight usually goes down as this excess water is excreted and the BP returns to normal.
There is no contraindication between high blood pressure medication and using supplemental bioidentical natural progesterone as it not only helps with the condition but is also protective of the heart. However, if you are taking diuretics or anti-hypertensive drugs and using Progesterone, it is wise to monitor your blood pressure and discuss your dosage need for such drugs with your doctor in order to prevent low blood pressure.
If you would like to know more about Dr Weil and his work please visit his website at www.drweil.com
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