Long-term fatty acids build up in the arteries. (4)

 

Long-term consequences of hypertension:

One of the results to
high blood pressure is damage to the heart and coronary artery damage. In the
presence of hypertension, the elasticity of blood vessels can reduce, making them
very stiff, and have a higher risk of rupture while limiting the blood flow to
the rest of the body(3). In addition to internal bleeding, aneurysms can also
occur. If this situation does not get controlled, the individual may suffer
from stroke that leads to brain damage, clots in the vessels, and or heart
diseases like dementia(3). Other long-term consequences include heart failure,
enlarged left heart, transient ischemic attack, kidney damage, kidney scarring,
and vision lost (3).

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Long-term consequences of obesity:

When an individual is
obese or overweight, the extra weight puts more pressure to the knee and hip
joints, making exercise more difficult (4). This excess weight increases the
risk of osteoarthritis, which causes pain and swelling in the joints(4). Overweight
individuals are also at a higher risk of developing high blood pressure and
heart diseases because the heart is unable to keep up with pumping enough blood
to the rest of the body. Atherosclerosis, which is the hardening of the arteries,
appears more often in overweight people. Obesity is also very likely to cause
coronary artery diseases because of the fatty acids build up in the arteries.
(4) In addition to this, as a result of high BMI, type II diabetes is commonly
found in people who are overweight(4).

Common causes of obesity:

·       Poor
diet (over-consuming food and not eating enough)

·       Drinking

·       Lack
of physical activity

·       Hormone
malfunctions

·       Stress,
emotional factors and poor sleep

Common causes of hypertension:

·       Obesity

·       Smoking

·       Drinking

·       Excess
salt in the diet

·       Old
age

·       Genetics

 

Interpretation on the graph:

           The
first thing that is observed from the graph is how as females age, their chances
of having high blood pressure and obesity first decrease but then increase
significantly when they reach their late 50s. The percentage of hypertension in
female adults rises by 7.6% from ’35 to 44 years’ to ’45 to 64 years’.
Similarly, the percentage of obese females also rises by almost 7%. Because
both conditions increase and decrease at the same time, and how both conditions
change by similar percentages, there is a close relationship between the two.

           Looking
at the graph, both hypertension and obesity are more common in younger and
older people. These are common in young adults because their bodies are still
growing. Transitioning to adulthood is tough for young adults, especially when
they have to deal with both education and adulthood. During these times, they
are less likely to eat healthy, gain enough sleep, or exercise. The result of
this is an increase in weight, which causes these young adults to be at risk of
high blood pressure. Similar to young adults, the older generation does not
have enough energy to exercise,  thus
resulting in overweight or obesity. In addition to this, as people age, there
is a greater chance that some of the blood vessels will have fat deposits that
affect how the heart works. The overall body performance decreases as people
become older. This again contributes to the development of obesity and high
blood pressure.

The reason why this
relationship exists is due to how the build up of fat contributes to developing
hypertension (5). When the number of obese or overweight people increase, there
are more people who are at risk of high blood pressure, thus also increasing
the number of people who have high blood pressure. The fat in the body secrets
a hormone called aldosterone, and the volume of aldosterone increases when
there is more fat. (6) When there is an excess amount of aldosterone, this
hormone has the ability to increase blood pressure. However, this does not mean
that every obese person has high blood pressure. In addition to the hormone,
excess fat can cause the arteries to become thick and stiff, causing atherosclerosis
(5). With an increased amount of tissue in the body, more oxygen and nutrients
are required. This then increases the circulation of blood throughout the body.
(5) As more blood is pumped, the heart experiences a bigger workload, which
puts more pressure to the arterial walls.