Participants: Don Miller, Agatha Thrash
Series Code: HYTH
Program Code: HYTH000144
00:01 The silent killer in the United States
00:03 is still high blood pressure...
00:05 and we are very eager to have you understand
00:08 as much as we can let you know about blood pressure
00:12 and how to control it...
00:13 because very few people who have hypertension
00:16 in the United states know how to control the blood pressure...
00:19 even with medications.
00:22 I'm Agatha Thrash, a staff physician
00:24 from Uchee Pines Institute,
00:26 a Medical Missionary Training Institution,
00:29 and we'd like to invite you to join us as we present this
00:32 program on hypertension for you in the next half-an-hour.
00:35 Join us, won't you?
00:56 Welcome to "Help Yourself to Health"
00:59 with Dr. Agatha Thrash of Uchee Pines Institute
01:02 and now, here's your host, Dr. Thrash.
01:07 Certain segments of our population tend to have
01:12 more hypertension than other segments.
01:14 One segment is that familial group like myself.
01:19 In my family, we just expect that almost everybody
01:22 is going to have high blood pressure at some time.
01:25 Then, there are the American blacks,
01:28 they tend to be more likely to have high blood pressure than
01:33 other segment groups.
01:34 So those of us who have a problem with high blood pressure
01:38 need to learn early in life how we can take care of that.
01:42 So, my husband and I wrote a book called...
01:45 "Natural Treatments for Hypertension"
01:47 and published it a number of years ago showing how
01:51 various natural things can be used by people who have
01:57 high blood pressure.
01:58 And what we did was to try to get everything that was
02:02 applicable to a home setting and put it in one book
02:07 for the control of hypertension.
02:09 So, we think that people reading this could be greatly blessed by
02:14 knowing about this aspect of what is available to treat
02:20 high blood pressure.
02:21 We also feel that every person and every family who has a
02:27 problem with blood pressure should have their own
02:30 blood pressure cuff and stethoscope and
02:33 most of the time, you can get this kind of equipment in
02:36 a drug store, or a variety store or a department store like
02:40 You can get these for under $25.
02:44 You don't need the best quality of stethoscope.
02:47 You can get a stethoscope for over $100...
02:49 but a stethoscope that costs under $5 will usually
02:53 do the job very well for you.
02:56 What you need to watch out for is that this tube
02:59 right here, is sort of stiffened
03:01 and is not flimsy and that it doesn't make noise
03:07 this one that has 2 tubes like this needs to have some kind
03:12 of stabilizing device such as this one has...
03:14 so that they won't flop together like that and cause you to
03:19 make an error or cause you to hurt your ears.
03:21 Now, the way to put the stethoscope in the ears
03:26 you would think that if it points sort of towards you
03:30 this way, that that would be the way to put it in,
03:32 but actually, you want the ear pieces to point forward just
03:37 a little bit.
03:38 And so, often it will come that way.
03:41 If it does not come that way,
03:42 then you should simply take your thumbs and push the
03:45 ear pieces forward just a bit, so that they will
03:48 fit better in the ears,
03:50 because the ear canals go upward and backward,
03:54 not forward as one might think and so it makes it
03:58 easier for the person to hear.
04:01 Then, also, don't put this in your ears before you get
04:06 this part positioned under the edge of the cuff...
04:09 Because if you try to slip it under and this is in your
04:13 ears, it will be like loud thunder right in your ear.
04:17 And, so you want to protect your ears in this way.
04:20 Then, of course, you can get someone to teach you how to
04:25 do the blood pressure reading or most blood pressure cuffs
04:29 come with some instructions that tell you how to do
04:34 your own blood pressure.
04:35 Now, you need to know what the readings mean.
04:40 There are two aspects of the readings;
04:44 one is the systolic and I would like to show you on the
04:48 board, just what these various things mean.
04:52 Now, I have here 120/80 and these are
04:58 the systolic and the diastolic which is here.
05:11 Now as you see these, you may wonder
05:15 what do these mean?
05:16 Well, we recognize 120/80 as being the upper limit of ideal.
05:22 Now, you may find that your blood pressure
05:26 is different from that...
05:27 But if it is higher...
05:28 let's say yours is 140/80,
05:32 you may worry just a little bit about this higher pressure
05:38 because it's making a trend in a wrong direction.
05:42 And while we would not yet call this hypertension,
05:45 we might give you some caution that your blood pressure
05:49 is going up.
05:51 Because doubtless, it has not been that all of your life.
05:54 When you were a child and maybe a teen,
05:58 it was doubtless less than that.
05:59 But now it's going up and you can expect that
06:03 little by little, it will continue to go up,
06:07 and the systolic will also go up... perhaps to 90.
06:10 Now some cardiologists, would not even call
06:14 this hypertension, 150/90, but
06:18 we can say that it is above the ideal.
06:19 And what the researchers have found is that at each level,
06:26 as the systolic goes up 10 points, we find that there is
06:31 a 15% increase in the number of strokes.
06:35 So whatever it is at 120/80,
06:39 at 130/80, the stroke rate will be about 15% greater.
06:44 And at 140, the stroke rate will be about 15% greater
06:48 than it is at 130.
06:49 Now admittedly, at these levels we're not going to have
06:52 much stroke at all... either way.
06:55 But just to know that we want to keep the blood pressure
07:00 as low as possible.
07:01 Now there is another thing for you to know...
07:03 and this is a test that you can make yourself.
07:06 This is called postural hypotension.
07:09 That means your posture makes a difference
07:12 in your blood pressure.
07:13 Let us say that you're blood pressure is...
07:17 we'll just say 150/90...
07:21 and that's what it is when you're sitting at a table.
07:23 And then when you stand up,
07:26 the blood pressure cuff is still on your arm
07:29 stethoscope is still in place
07:31 when you stand up, give a few seconds
07:33 and then take the blood pressure reading again.
07:36 If it drops considerably...
07:39 let's say it drops to 130/65,
07:44 then we may say that you have postural hypotension.
07:48 Postural hypotension is not a good sign
07:51 in blood pressure readings...
07:54 and so we want to be careful about
07:55 watching that aspect as well.
07:58 Postural hypotension can increase your risk of getting
08:02 various kinds of blood pressure problems.
08:05 Now some people will look at their blood pressure
08:09 and let us say that theirs is about 90/40...
08:17 and they think... "Oh, I have very low blood pressure
08:22 that must be why I don't feel good. "
08:26 No, that isn't why you don't feel good.
08:28 There is some other cause.
08:30 Most likely, it's a very rare person who runs a
08:34 blood pressure of 90/40
08:36 or even less than that...
08:38 ...even 80/20, who has symptoms from their blood pressure.
08:44 If you are weak, or you feel not good,
08:48 with a low blood pressure,
08:49 it may be because you aren't drinking enough water,
08:52 or because you don't sleep enough at night,
08:55 or because you are tense and nervous, or you're high strung.
08:58 But it's not likely to be your blood pressure,
09:01 not if it is a reading like this
09:03 Let me show you why...
09:04 We depend on the difference between the systolic and
09:09 the diastolic to help us to have a circulation.
09:14 So the pressure that the heart puts on the blood,
09:18 and the relaxation of the vessels,
09:22 will determine how good the circulation is.
09:25 So if you get a good squeeze on the heart,
09:28 and the vessels will receive it very well,
09:31 and pump it back to the heart very well,
09:34 you're going to have a good circulation.
09:37 And a good circulation is what is required to
09:40 make it so that you feel good.
09:41 So let us define then, what this difference is.
09:48 It is called "pulse pressure. "
09:57 Now the pulse pressure determines your circulation.
10:00 This pressure is what makes the blood pass from the heart
10:07 through the arteries and veins and back to the heart again.
10:10 And so, if you have a very low blood pressure,
10:14 don't feel that it is automatically a sign of
10:17 your not having sufficient blood of sufficient circulation.
10:21 Now one of the important things that we find that a
10:26 person has in the control of the blood pressure
10:29 is that of the religious experience.
10:31 And of course, the religious experience involves not only
10:35 church-going but also individual Bible study and prayer,
10:41 and meditation and transferring your guilts and your
10:45 stresses and your dissatisfactions or
10:49 whatever you may have might be a negative emotion...
10:51 transferring these to the Lord...
10:53 letting the Lord take care of those things that you
10:56 cannot change.
10:57 Do not bear those as your own stresses,
11:00 but talk with the Lord about those and
11:02 and recognize that the Lord wants you to be happy.
11:05 The Lord wants you to be healthy.
11:07 And so, if your schedule, or your surroundings,
11:11 or the weather where you live,
11:13 or whatever it may be... your job...
11:15 whatever it may be that is a part of your life,
11:19 if you cannot control it,
11:20 you cannot change it,
11:22 then you may pray and the Lord is merciful and good to
11:26 make it so that we are able to have a reversal of those
11:32 feelings of tension and stress.
11:34 Now another thing that we can do to make it so that we have
11:39 better control of the blood pressure
11:40 is that of weight control.
11:43 In the weight control, there are only a few rules
11:47 that we need to have so that we can control the weight the best.
11:50 And without any question,
11:52 I tell you from much experience,
11:54 my own experience, as well as the experience of many patients,
11:57 that you will feel more comfortable with your food
12:01 if you're a total vegetarian and trying to lose weight.
12:04 You will be able to eat enough so that you are comfortable
12:07 and you still can lose weight.
12:10 So let me recommend that you consider being a
12:13 total vegetarian when you are trying to lose weight.
12:17 That means to use fruits, vegetables, whole grains,
12:21 nuts, and seeds.
12:23 And that will be your diet.
12:26 And the many delicious things that we can prepare from
12:30 these very simple foods that God has provided for us.
12:33 So that's one very simple rule.
12:36 If you can't follow that one,
12:38 then aim toward it as much as you can
12:42 with the expectation that eventually you will try to get
12:46 the whole way.
12:47 The second thing that I can tell you
12:50 that will help you to be comfortable with your diet
12:53 and still lose weight is that of free fats or visible fats.
12:57 That would be margarine, mayonnaise, fried foods,
13:00 cooking fats, salad oils and in the beginning,
13:04 it would also be nut butters.
13:06 That would be peanut butter, almond butter,
13:08 sesame butter, and any of the nut butters that you might get.
13:13 Nut butters have free fats in them which are handled
13:17 a little differently in the body.
13:19 Not in the chemistry of it but it's absorption and
13:22 and the way it's handled in the intestinal tract and the liver.
13:26 You can control your weight better if you do not have
13:32 these free fats.
13:33 Now another thing that you will find will help you with
13:37 diet, is that of not having a great variety at one meal.
13:42 A great variety would be maybe 2 or 3 main dishes,
13:47 and 3 or 4 fruits or vegetables or fruits and vegetables
13:51 mixed at the same meal, 2 or 3 breads,
13:54 and 1 or 2 spreads.
13:57 The more items you have in a meal,
14:00 the greater the likelihood that you are going to overeat.
14:04 Because you eat this thing and you think...
14:06 "Well, I'm not satisfied with that... I'm not full with that,
14:11 so, I will eat some of this. "
14:13 And then, you want seconds because you haven't had enough
14:17 so you take seconds and seconds of this, and seconds of this
14:20 and seconds of this and...
14:21 And you've had much too much to eat.
14:23 Whereas if you have... let us say... 2 or 3 items in a meal,
14:28 maybe plus bread and spread.
14:30 Then you tire of that article of food before you have
14:36 fully filled up and you just have to say...
14:38 "I can't eat anymore.
14:42 I'm going to have to push away from the table. "
14:43 So if you will learn that simple rule,
14:46 it's not very difficult to do,
14:48 that simple rule will help you.
14:51 Then another very simple rule...
14:53 Nothing between meals
14:55 and nothing after 4 in the afternoon.
14:58 That means a 2-meal plan.
14:59 Eat a good breakfast, eat a generous lunch
15:03 and no supper at all.
15:04 Now most people eat only 2 meals a day.
15:07 Unfortunately, they eat the wrong 2 meals.
15:09 They eat lunch and they eat a humongous dinner.
15:15 And, we should have dinner in the middle of the day
15:18 and not in the evening.
15:20 Lunch should represent probably about 40%
15:27 of what we eat in a day.
15:29 Breakfast should be maybe 50% of what we eat...
15:34 and then if we eat anything at all in the evening,
15:36 it should be no more than about 10% of our daily food intake.
15:40 And so in this way, we can help ourselves very much with
15:44 weight control which is very important in the control of
15:49 the blood pressure.
15:50 Now I'd like to talk with you also a bit about
15:53 salt restriction.
15:55 Salt restriction alone can help many people who are
15:58 salt-retainers to have a reduction in their
16:01 blood pressure.
16:02 Some studies show that probably about the ideal amount of
16:08 intake of salt would be about 500 mg per day...
16:13 that's in all that we eat
16:15 and that's not added salt,
16:17 that would be sodium as it occurs or salt as it occurs
16:21 in our foods and many foods, especially many vegetables
16:26 are themselves high in salt.
16:28 So we want to be very careful not to overdo with the salt.
16:32 A rule of thumb that will help you to keep your salt intake
16:36 below what we might consider to be the therapeutic level is
16:41 #1. No baked goods. Baked goods all have some salt added to them
16:47 unless they are marked "salt-free. "
16:50 Then, no ready-prepared foods...
16:52 because all ready-prepared foods also have salt added to them
16:57 unless they are marked "salt-free. "
16:58 Then, no dairy products...
17:01 because dairy products are naturally high in salt.
17:04 And if dairy products are made up into some kind of prepared
17:07 dish, they will also have salt added to that too, most likely.
17:11 And, so dairy products are a problem for the person.
17:15 And then the rule, no salt added at the factory,
17:18 no salt added at the stove
17:20 and no salt added at the table.
17:22 And with these simple rules,
17:24 you can enjoy the benefits of a diet below 500 mg
17:32 of salt in the food that we eat in one day.
17:36 Now there are many other aspects of controlling the
17:40 blood pressure and Don Miller, my coworker at Uchee Pines
17:45 is going to help you.
17:47 And I see him bringing on a large pill...
17:51 That's a very LARGE blood pressure pill!
17:55 That's my favorite pill.
17:56 It's one of mine...
17:58 If that will help my blood pressure, I want to know it.
18:01 You tell us about it.
18:02 Okay, we'll talk about that.
18:04 God has given us all of the medicines that we need
18:08 in the natural environment
18:10 but I want to just mention 2 things...
18:12 Dr. Thrash has been talking to you about salt...
18:14 I want to give you a personal experience about salt.
18:17 A number of years ago, I went to work for a
18:20 number of Korean people in the northern part of Georgia.
18:24 And every single person in this whole place was salt-free.
18:29 The cooks cooked salt-free for everybody...
18:33 and I was part of the everybody.
18:34 So every meal, I went down to salt-free rice, salt-free tofu,
18:39 salt-free everything.
18:41 And quite frankly, I'll have to admit, it was insipid at first,
18:45 and was really hard to take.
18:46 After the 2-week period of time, with these people eating a
18:51 total salt-free diet, I mean it was salt-free...
18:54 not one grain of sodium in it anywhere...
18:56 I LOVED the food.
18:58 It was SO good.
18:59 Then I got in my car and drove back down to
19:03 Alabama, to my home...
19:05 got there about lunchtime.
19:06 I had driven all morning.
19:07 And, being a bachelor, I went to a bachelor's favorite
19:10 food... opened a can of beans,
19:12 put them in my skillet, warmed them up.
19:14 Sat down, dumped them on a plate...
19:15 took one bite... threw them all in the garbage.
19:18 They were SO salty, I could not stand them any more.
19:21 It is a learned habit.
19:24 It's and acquired taste and we CAN break the taste.
19:28 NO one needs that much salt.
19:30 No one at all.
19:31 And I want to give one other exercise...
19:33 Dr. Thrash talked about low blood pressure.
19:36 And in case the low blood pressure is being caused by
19:39 a disease process, and you just don't feel good with it,
19:42 if you feel good and your blood pressure is low,
19:45 let me give you an exercise for that.
19:47 It's a very simple exercise.
19:49 Basically, you take the palm of one hand
19:51 and you place your elbow in your hand and then you
19:55 put your arm on your shoulder and you push,
19:58 like this and you do this.
20:00 That's a nice exercise for low blood pressure.
20:04 Congratulate yourself...
20:06 that you've lived in such a way to get your blood pressure
20:09 down low enough that your heart is saying...
20:11 "I love living here.
20:13 I love working for this person.
20:14 I'm going to work for a long, long time. "
20:16 There are ways that we can get our blood pressure down.
20:19 ...One is by exercise.
20:21 Getting out there... getting that heart working...
20:23 see working that heart out there in the exercise
20:26 in the fresh air and the sunshine,
20:27 lowers our blood cholesterol,
20:29 lowers our blood pressure,
20:31 strengthens our heart...
20:32 not just strengthens the heart muscle,
20:35 but strengthens the muscles in our arterial system.
20:39 And so everything is stronger...
20:41 blood pressure goes down.
20:42 We could also lower the blood pressure by
20:45 staying out of stressful situations.
20:47 And many times, we can't stay out of the stressful situation,
20:50 so we have to learn how to control or manage the stress.
20:54 If there is something that comes up that is very stressful,
20:56 either quit the field... is one term we can use,
21:00 go outside, do some exercise because exercise neutralizes
21:03 stress... turn to a different activity.
21:06 And if you cannot change it,
21:07 then resign it to the Lord and let the Lord handle your stress.
21:11 That's the best way to take care of your stress.
21:13 Sit there and say, "I cannot control this situation right now
21:17 but I'm not going to let this situation control me either. "
21:20 Relax... and let it go.
21:23 It will pass, believe me.
21:25 "This too shall pass. "
21:27 Other things we can do for our blood pressure Dr. Thrash
21:30 talked about lowering our salt intake.
21:34 There are certain foods that we can take into our diet.
21:36 You've heard a lot about things like omega-3 fatty acids,
21:41 and L-arginine.
21:42 L- arginine is a very nice food,
21:44 and I want to just explain briefly about L-arginine.
21:47 It's one of the base elements in the endothelial cells
21:53 of our vascular system that produces a chemical called
21:58 "nitric oxide. "
22:00 The nitric oxide allows the vascular walls,
22:05 the arterial walls to relax.
22:06 When they can relax, we have lower blood pressure.
22:09 Trouble is... if our cholesterol is high into our system,
22:13 it sort of fudges up that system
22:15 and the higher our cholesterol,
22:18 the faster it destroys this nitric oxide.
22:21 Well, it destroys the nitric oxide...
22:24 our endothelium cells produce more nitric oxide
22:27 using up more the L-arginine.
22:29 Pretty soon, it completely depletes the L-arginine.
22:33 And what do you have left?
22:34 You have no nitric oxide,
22:36 the artery walls become rigid
22:37 and they do not relax
22:40 and; therefore, we have a higher blood pressure.
22:42 We need to eat foods that are high in L-arginine.
22:46 And just very briefly... what are those foods?
22:48 Fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts and seeds.
22:54 Eat God's foods and you will get enough L-arginine.
22:57 We find that even with a high cholesterol,
23:01 if we are eating foods high in L- arginine,
23:04 we will find that our blood pressure goes down
23:07 because it still producing enough of the nitric oxide
23:11 to relax the vascular walls.
23:14 There are other very good foods...
23:16 and some of my favorite, I've mentioned these particular
23:18 pills and I've brought my favorite pill here today.
23:20 This is one of my favorite pills...
23:23 it's high in potassium.
23:25 Potassium has a tendency to lower the blood pressure.
23:29 There are many foods that are very high in potassium.
23:33 I've sort of made a list here.
23:34 As a matter of fact, they did a study in 1997...
23:37 basically, it wasn't a study,
23:38 it was a review of all the literature on potassium.
23:42 And as they looked at all the literature
23:44 about the effects of potassium,
23:46 they found that it has an effect on lowering the
23:49 blood pressure.
23:51 All right, some of the foods with potassium besides my
23:52 watermelon here...
23:54 fruits, vegetables and whole grains.
23:56 Okay, great.
23:57 In particular, things like apricots, avocados, bananas,
24:01 blackstrap molasses.
24:03 A good way to take blackstrap molasses...
24:05 it is also going to give you some good iron,
24:07 is take a spoonful, put it in some warm water,
24:10 stir it up and drink the water.
24:12 You are going to be getting plenty of the potassium,
24:15 and plenty of the iron.
24:17 Also, figs, dried fruits, nuts and potatoes
24:22 and another one of my favorite foods which is garlic.
24:25 Garlic is a good source of potassium but is also an
24:28 extremely good medicine for your high blood pressure.
24:32 You see... garlic has an antiplatelet stickiness factor.
24:37 And that's what we want.
24:39 We have higher blood pressure when all of a sudden, or
24:42 over a period of time,
24:44 our blood cells start to aggregate or stick together
24:48 and our blood has to push harder... the heart is pushing
24:51 harder to get this stuff up through those small capillaries
24:54 and many times, it can't get through the small capillaries
24:57 and parts of tissue die in the kidneys, in the eyes,
25:00 in all parts of the body.
25:03 And so, we need to be taking this garlic which has the
25:07 antiplatelet stickiness factor,
25:09 one raw clove a day will give us all the antiplatelet
25:13 stickiness factor that we need to keep our blood less viscid
25:16 and keep it flowing through our bodies...
25:19 and I believe there is something in here that keeps
25:20 the mosquitoes away.
25:21 So, it's a good food and I recommend it to your palate.
25:26 Very good, the garlic is also a good anti-mosquito food and
25:33 we want to let it be exuding from the skin.
25:36 Now there are some herbal remedies that I would like to
25:40 show you that can help in the control of blood pressure.
25:44 Coleus is one of those.
25:46 Coleus forskohlin is the very same little plant that
25:50 grows in pots.
25:52 Then Hawthorne berry...
25:54 Hawthorne is a relative of apples and has a number
25:59 of phytochemicals in it.
26:01 Those chemicals that come from plants... that have a beneficial
26:05 effect on the blood pressure.
26:08 Ginkgo is known for its benefits to the memory but it is also
26:13 excellent for the blood pressure.
26:15 Cornsilk and watermelon seed and buchu...
26:18 these are 3 diuretic herbs and are very helpful in the control
26:25 of blood pressure.
26:26 We also have some interesting other herbs...
26:30 and I'd like to show you... Arjuna bark.
26:34 Arjuna bark is not one that we're very familiar with
26:38 but it is one that is very good.
26:40 And the olive leaf and the mistletoe.
26:43 Those are also very good.
26:45 Mistletoe will slow down the heart rate,
26:47 and olive leaf has a number of other very good benefits
26:51 besides on the blood pressure.
26:53 Then I have one more graphic to show you...
26:55 These are more herbs for blood pressure...
27:00 Yarrow, black cumin seed and, of course, garlic.
27:03 The yarrow is a very common herb that we find growing
27:09 everywhere and the Lord put these good plant chemicals
27:15 in the plants not just when modern peoples began to have
27:19 high blood pressure...
27:20 but the Lord put these phytochemicals in the plants
27:25 from the very beginning...
27:26 And I've often wondered whether He put them in the plants BEFORE
27:31 Adam and Eve had their experiment into sin,
27:35 or if God put them in the plants AFTER Adam and Eve sinned.
27:43 Whatever it is, we can know that our Heavenly Father
27:46 has made provision and that we need not feel
27:52 that we are helpless
27:53 against high blood pressure.