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Does Hypertension Cause Severe Headaches?

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Detecting hypertension without a blood pressure monitor might be challenging. However, a severe headache among other symptoms might occur if blood pressure rises extremely high.

A 2022 study  notes that elevated high blood pressure or hypertension is one of the leading global modifiable risk factor of cardiovascular disease and major cause of premature deaths. It is a silent killer condition that has caused 71% of total global deaths, affecting more than 41 billion people around the world. The number of individuals acquiring this condition keeps increasing every day; it has been estimated in a 2023 study carried out worldwide by WHO that 46% of adults with hypertension are unaware that they have this condition.

For this reason, since this condition seems to have no warning signs or symptoms, blood pressure must be measured and monitored regularly. There is also less awareness, treatment, and management rates of hypertension, particularly among those aged between 20 -39.

With that in mind, this article calls for more effective detection of high blood pressure by shedding some light on what hypertension disease is and the signs and symptoms to look out for and help you understand how you can naturally reverse the condition or prevent it from developing in later life.

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What is Hypertension? Signs and Symptoms/Treatment/Complications

What is hypertension?

This is a condition that happens when blood vessel pressure is continuously raised.  It is also known as high or raised blood pressure.

For blood to circulate in the body, it needs to be pumped by the heart into the vessels then arteries carry the blood to other parts of the body.

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How does it happen?

When the force of blood against arterial walls is high it might cause health issues like heart diseases. The more heart pumps blood the narrower the artery will be and this is where high blood pressure occurs.

How do you know it is hypertension?

Two readings are often given in millimeters of mercury (mmHg).  They include; –

  1. Top numbers (systolic pressure) – This is a measurement of pressure in your arteries when your heart beats.
  2. The bottom number (diastolic pressure) – This is a measurement of pressure in your arteries between beats.

How do you check your pressure?

Blood pressure has different stages and classifications; –

Normal blood pressure – below 120/80mmhg

Elevated blood pressure – This is the stage that is normally known as prehypertension. Systolic pressure 120-129mmhg, diastolic pressure below 80mmhg

Stage 1 hypertension – This is the stage that one needs to take control of and be aware of the risks that can get one to being hypertensive.  It’s also known as the cautious stage. Systolic pressure 130-139mmhg, diastolic pressure 80-90mmhg

Stage 2 hypertension – systolic pressure 140mmhg or above, diastolic pressure 90mmgh or higher

Hypertension emergency – This blood pressure reading is higher than 180/120mmhg. If you get this reading do a retest and seek medical attention immediately.

In case you find the blood, pressure is high or slightly high it is recommended that you do several blood pressure readings at least three times on appointment since it tends to vary from time to time.

What are the symptoms to watch for if you suspect your blood pressure has gone up or it is raised?

In Kenya, it has been estimated that only 15.5% of the population is aware of this condition. This means almost three-quarters of the Kenyan population have no idea about their blood pressure health.

These symptoms are often not felt; if you experience these signs and symptoms then you will require immediate medical attention. Do not ignore the symptoms you are feeling. Your body could be communicating.

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They include: –

  • Chest pain
  • Confusion
  • Severe headache
  • Nose bleeding
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Fatigue
  • Vision problems
  • Anxiety
  • Shortness of breath.


High blood pressure tends to run in families. However, unhealthy lifestyle choices also often contribute.  It is advisable to know what triggers high blood pressure to prevent it from developing or if diagnosed with it, how best you can control it to prevent further complications associated with unmanaged high blood pressure.

The following are the risk factors for high blood pressure

  • Unhealthy diet: Excessive intake of saturated fats and transfatty acids are risk factors of cardiovascular diseases.
  • Age: High blood pressure risk increases as we age. According to studies by WHO it has shown 46% population between 60-69 years were on anti-hypertensive medication while among people between the ages of 18-29 only 4% were on the medication.
  • Genetics: High blood pressure tends to run in the families so it occurs from one generation to another.
  • Overweight or obesity: The more weight you have the higher blood supply your body needs to transport oxygen and nutrients hence more pressure accumulation on the arteries leading to high blood pressure. Studies have shown a loss of weight in overweight persons lowered blood pressure
  • Lack of physical activity: Lack of exercise increases the risk of being overweight or obese. Physical inactivity makes heart muscles harder to work which causes a stronger force on arteries affecting blood pressure. According to American Heart Association, less active and less fit persons have a 30-50 percent greater risk of developing blood pressure.
  • Too much alcohol: Prolonged period of excessive intake of alcohol affects heart functions.
  • Tobacco use: Smoking tends to increase blood pressure; it damages the lining of the arterial walls causing them to narrow which causes an increase in pressure.
  • High sodium diet: Too much salt or consumption of highly processed foods contains more salts which cause the body to retain a lot of fluids which increases pressure.
  • Stress: Too much stress can aggravate blood pressure.  Although stress may not directly cause hypertension, it can lead to repeated blood pressure elevations which eventually may lead to hypertension.
  • Pregnancy: This is commonly referred to as pre-eclampsia.  It often happens at the onset of pregnancy. Studies have shown an increase in the number of pregnant women with hypertension disorders over the years

High blood pressure is common in adults, although children are also at risk especially if one has a heart problem or kidney disorder or even poor dietary habits and inactivity can precipitate childhood obesity and hypertension.

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In another recent study, it was determined that the number of raised blood pressure contributes to 7.6 million deaths worldwide annually. This shows how rapidly the disease is on the rise, especially in low-and-middle-income countries.

If you are not cautious about how to handle and manage high blood pressure the following complications are bound to happen: –

  • Heart failure: The thickening and narrowing of blood vessels make the heart unable to provide enough blood to the body leading to heart failure.
  • Stroke: According to American Stroke Association, the narrowed and stiffened blood vessels cause a buildup of fatty materials called plaques which leads to atherosclerosis. These clots travel to the brain which leads to stroke.
  • Eye problems: This is due to thick and narrow blood vessels in the eyes that can result in vision loss.
  • Metabolic issues: Unmanaged high blood pressure can increase the risk of obesity, diabetes, and high cholesterol levels.
  • Kidney Disorders
  • Memory issues: The inability to think and learn or remember can be affected, also known as dementia.

Many cases are being recorded on the high number of individuals being diagnosed with high blood pressure daily.  As the numbers keep rising it’s best to understand the cause to control the numbers and even good to know how you can manage your pressure in case you are hypertensive.


How to deal with the management of high blood pressure depends on how disciplined you are with your diet, and following the prescription of drugs given by your health care provider.

Working close to close with a dietitian and nutritionist can ease the process of management since they help one to naturally reverse high blood pressure and equip you with knowledge on the best foods and plan your meals to improve quality of life. Click here to book an appointment with our team of experts.

Supplementation is also considered, before you start supplementation get the right expert advice for the best herbal medicine for hypertension.

Since we are majorly focusing on lifestyle change and embracing healthy living, for us, our goal is to help people understand how their plate has an effect on their well-being and how best we can manage the disease through healthy diet plans for hypertension.

In a study, it was reported that a larger population had shown an improvement in their blood pressure after embracing a healthy lifestyle change and antihypertensive medication treatment. This also lowered the risk of mortality. 

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Find out through our ebooks on lifestyle and dietary changes you can apply and use in order to keep your blood pressure on the normal ranges or even prevent you from getting hypertensive.

Click here below link for:

Ebook on treatment of high blood pressure; how to reverse hypertension naturally with nutrition.


High blood pressure is when the heart uses much pressure to pump blood through the narrowed blood vessels.

High blood pressure signs and symptoms are often not felt. One must therefore be keen on how he or she feels in his or her body and take the necessary measures.

Signs and symptoms to look out for are vision problems, shortness of breath, anxiety, irregular heartbeat, severe headache, fatigue, chest pain, confusion, etc.

Risk factors associated with high blood pressure include; obesity, age, drinking too much alcohol, tobacco smoking, genetics, stress, pregnancy, etc.

Complications that lead to unmanaged high blood pressure; eye problems, memory issues, heart failure, stroke, kidney disorder, diabetes, high cholesterol levels, etc.

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