It is necessary to be careful about blood pressure from the time when menstruation is irregular before menopause.
The important substance for menopausal women is NO (Nitrogen monoxide) which is secreted from endothelial cells which line the inside of every blood vessel in the body. NO has the function to protect the body from high blood pressure. NO affects smooth muscles of blood vessels and makes blood vessels larger and flexible. In addition, NO affects the kidneys and makes the kidneys easily excrete salt.
NO prevents high blood pressure with two effects which are enlargement of blood vessels and excretion of salt.
If NO is secreted profusely even after menopause, the function of the kidneys gets better, resulting in excreting salt sufficiently with urine.
How can we increase the secretion of NO?
Raising the core body temperature by 1 degrees C (1.8 degrees F) increases NO.
If you raise the core body temperature by 1 degrees C by taking a bath, the amount of blood flow in the whole body increases and the blood flow becomes faster. Endothelial cells in blood vessels are stimulated by the faster blood flow, secreting NO profusely.
What kind of bathing raises the core body temperature by 1 degrees C?
The bathing method is soaking in a bath water which temperature is comfortable (about 41 degrees C (106 degrees F)) for 5-10 minutes up to the shoulders. The sign that the core body temperature rises by 1 degrees C is sweating on the face (Fig. 1).
Verification of the bathing method to raise the core body temperature
One of the six women (48 years old) could only excrete 5 grams of salt with urine out of 10 grams of salt she consumed a day. Salt not excreted with urine is stored in the body and she run a risk of having high blood pressure at any moment. Her NO secretion was checked by FMD test (Flow Medical Dilation Test) and it was 5.8 % which was less than reference value 6 %. She usually soaks in 42 degrees C water for 5 minutes. Her core body temperature increased by 0.6 degrees C which is less than required elevation of the core body temperature (1 degrees C) to increase NO.
She tried the above bathing method for a week and then took 10 grams of salt a day from three meals and how much salt was excreted with urine was measured. The amount of salt she could excrete was 8.8 grams (more than 8 grams is normal) and NO secretion was 6.3 % (reference value: more than 6 %). She could improve salt excretion and NO secretion within a week by taking a bath the way described above.
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