Fitness and health
Blood is under pressure in the arteries so that it reaches all parts of the body. Diet, exercise and other factors can affect the risk of heart disease developing.
Arteries carry blood away from the heart. Blood in the arteries is under pressure because of the contractions of the heart muscles. This allows the blood to reach all parts of the body. You can see how the heart pumps the blood to the lungs and rest of the body by studying this animation:
Blood pressure is measured in millimetres of mercury, mmHg. There are two measurements:
A young, fit person should have a blood pressure of about 120 over 70, which means their systolic pressure is 120 mmHg and their diastolic pressure 70 mmHg.
There are various factors that can increase blood pressure, including:
A balanced diet and regular exercise can reduce high blood pressure.
Extremes of blood pressure can create problems. High blood pressure can cause:
Low blood pressure can cause dizziness, fainting and poor blood circulation.
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