Combat the Three Highs Together
High blood pressure, high cholesterol, and high blood sugar are three common long-term medical conditions. Caring for our loved ones with these conditions can be overwhelming emotionally, physically, and financially. People with these conditions need to monitor their blood sugar levels and blood pressure, observe dietary restrictions, exercise, and meet up with healthcare professionals regularly. The elderly may also have other health conditions that complicate matters. As such, the roles of caregivers in the management of these conditions cannot be undermined.
Here’s what we can do together:
Maintain a healthy diet
- For better blood pressure control reduce the amount of salt in your diet and consume more fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and low-fat dairy instead.
- For better blood cholesterol control avoid saturated and trans-fat, and consume more foods that are rich in fibre and omega-3 fatty acids instead.
- For better blood sugar control avoid simple carbohydrates and sugars, and consume more whole grains at the appropriate portion sizes.
Regular physical activities help to maintain good blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar levels. Aim for least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity exercise each week.
Progressive weight loss can make a positive impact on the three highs. Work with your healthcare providers or dietitians for a tailored weight-loss plan.
Take your medications on time
Take your medications as directed and do not skip your scheduled checkups.
Chronic stress can elevate blood pressure and blood sugar levels. The practice of stress-reduction techniques such as deep-breathing exercises and meditation may help in controlling blood pressure and sugar levels.
Limit alcohol intake and stop smoking
Excessive alcohol consumption and smoking can worsen the complications from high blood pressure, cholesterol, and diabetes. Consume alcohol in appropriate amounts and stop smoking to avoid such complications.
Regular monitoring of your blood pressure and blood sugar levels at home provides better overview of the three highs and will help your doctors adjust your treatment.
Poor sleep contributes to high blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Aim for at least 7 to 9 hours of quality sleep every night.
Your family and friends or support groups can motivate you to remain dedicated to healthy habits and lifestyle choices.
Regular medical checkups
Regular visits to your healthcare provider will ensure the three highs are kept under control and timely treatment can be provided when new issues arise.