What Causes Fluctuations in Blood Pressure?

Your heart works to ensure that your five or so liters of blood continue to pump throughout your body. Blood pressure is the force that your blood exerts onto the walls of blood vessels, and doctors measure it to determine how healthy your blood vessels and heart are. It is normal to experience some variation in your blood pressure throughout the day, but extreme changes may indicate another issue that should be checked out. Most people won't notice any symptoms with their fluctuating blood pressure, making it challenging to detect them. Here the article will help you find out if your blood pressure is swinging and what you can do.

What Is Normal Blood Pressure?

Experts agree that a healthy adult should have a blood pressure of less than 120 mmHg for their systolic pressure and under 80 mmHg for diastolic pressure. While people's blood pressure can change minute by minute, you need to chart the blood pressure over a period of time if you want to get an accurate evaluation of your blood and heart health.

What Can Cause Fluctuating Blood Pressure?

1. Food Sensitivities

Some people will have changing blood pressure due to being sensitive to certain foods. In most cases, the blood pressure would dramatically rise after eating a trigger food. This is particularly common for those with salt sensitivities after taking very salty meals. Usually, this can return to normal for a while. Yet, you many need to make some diet changes, if such swings in pressure occur frequently.

2. Stress

When we are stressed, our bodies increase blood sugar, blood pressure, respiration rate, and heart rate. In a stressful situation, peripheral arteries constrict, making the heart work harder to get oxygenated blood throughout tissues in the body. Occasional stress isn't typically a concern but frequently experiencing it can cause chronic fluctuations in blood pressure which may be harmful.

3. Caffeine Consumption

As a stimulant, coffee produces a temporary rise in blood pressure. Drinking three or four cups may increase your blood pressure 4 to 13 mmHg. If you don't regularly have caffeine, you may notice more significant fluctuations. Experts don't know why caffeine increases blood pressure but think it may be due to constriction of blood vessels.

4. Medications

Certain medications, including over-the-counter ones, may lead to temporary elevations in blood pressure. These include anti-inflammatory meds, decongestants, and acetaminophen. You can experience worse fluctuations from illegal street drugs, leading to life-threatening situations.

5. Adrenal Fatigue

Your adrenals regulate multiple hormones in the body and can seriously affect your cardiovascular health. If your adrenals are fatigued due to an extended illness or excessive/chronic stress, they can't regulate your blood pressure properly.

6. Fever

A fever is a sign that your body is fighting an infection. Since a fever speeds up your heart rate, it increases your blood pressure due to the narrowing blood vessels. It is very common to notice fluctuating blood pressure during a fever or other sickness.

7. Deposits of Calcium or Cholesterol in the Arteries

If you have calcium and/or cholesterol deposits in your arteries, they will become stiff and inelastic. This makes them incapable of relaxing and causes hypertension. This condition is most common among those who are middle-aged or older and stiff arteries may also lead to systolic hypertension.

8. Dehydration

Dehydration can also lead to fluctuations with a dramatic decrease. You can just regain water retention to raise your blood pressure by increasing the blood volume.

Should I Concern About Fluctuating Blood Pressure?

120/80 is thought to be the perfect normal figure of blood pressure. Here is general chart of how the blood pressure readings are revealed.

Blood Pressure Figure (mmHG)

Healthy or Not


Perfect normal figure




Mildly raised

160/100 and above

Too high

Fluctuation in your annual readings can indicate a higher risk for women who are post-menopausal. An analysis suggests that in certain cases, fluctuations in systolic blood pressure can be linked with a higher risk of stroke. This applies to those who already have a high risk, for example, those with previous minor strokes or transient ischemic attacks.

High blood pressure is one of the leading causes of stroke, heart failure, heart attack, premature death, and kidney failure. Repeated high blood pressure can be a concern. Lifestyle changes and certain medications can be the typical and long time running treatment that doctors suggest for those with high or fluctuating blood pressure.

How to Deal With It

One thing to make it clear is that cholesterol-lowering drugs do not remove plaque deposits or increase their elasticity. So the sure way to regulate your blood pressure is to improve your whole health on a permanent basis, such as, strengthen your adrenals, improve your arterial elasticity, and keep your stress under control. Your doctor can provide recommendations for achieving these specific goals.

The severity of blood pressure fluctuation depends on how high it rises and how long it stays. Those who experience intermittent elevation of blood pressure are at a higher risk of developing hypertension in the future. And natural remedies can help to lower your blood pressure without being labeled as having high blood pressure.

You can use herbs or supplements, but always consult them before taking any. It also helps to control your weight through diet and exercise—key components of maintaining a healthy blood pressure. For lifestyles, stop smoking and limit alcohol intake to no more than one or two drinks each day. Besides, deep breathing exercises can help with stress-related fluctuations. Reducing your intake of sodium/salt can help prevent water retention and therefore lower pressure further.

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