All Collections
Messages in your feed
How to analyze blood pressure with Welltory
How to analyze blood pressure with Welltory
Mark avatar
Written by Mark
Updated over a week ago

If you've just started tracking your blood pressure or been doing it for a while, Welltory can give you a complete and accurate analysis of each reading. Note that you can't measure your blood pressure with Welltory — you'll need to use a blood pressure monitor.

We analyze your readings in accordance with the 2018 ESC/ESH Guidelines for the management of arterial hypertension, and supplement them with additional indexes that give you a more complete picture of what’s happening with your cardiovascular system. We’ll also alert you when a reading looks alarming. However, any medical assessment or recommendations can only be given by your physician. Our interpretations cannot be considered a medical assessment or used as recommendations to start, change, or end any treatment.

If you enter your blood pressure regularly — automatically or by hand — you’ll be able to track trends on charts or in the blood pressure log (monthly blood pressure report), see what impacts your results, and help your doctor understand how well your treatment is working.

Note: A complete blood pressure analysis is available in the free version for the first 5 days. Go Premium for unlimited blood pressure analytics. A blood pressure log (monthly blood pressure report) is available only to Premium users.

Can I measure my blood pressure with Welltory?

No. Welltory and most other apps cannot take blood pressure readings — you'll need to use a blood pressure monitor.

Most smart blood pressure monitors such as Qardio, Omron, iHealth, and Medisana can be connected to Welltory via Apple Health, Google Fit, or Samsung Health. Withings smart BP monitors, on the other hand, can directly share data with Welltory. Additionally, regular blood pressure monitors are also compatible — you can just enter your readings into the Welltory app manually.

How do I enter my blood pressure data in the Welltory app?

There are two options:

1. Automatically. If you use a Qardio, Omron, iHealth, or Medisana blood pressure monitor, connect it to Welltory via Apple Health, Google Fit, or Samsung Health. If you use a Withings smart one, just sync it directly with Welltory.

2. Manually.

  • Tap the plus sign in the upper right corner of your feed and scroll to the bottom of the screen.

  • You’ll see a button to enter your blood pressure numbers in the lower-left corner.

  • Enter your top and bottom numbers.

  • Enter your heart rate, if your monitor tracks it. Your heart rate data will help us calculate additional indexes and offer you an in-depth analysis of your cardiovascular system.

  • You can skip the heart rate field if you’ve been wearing your fitness tracker or measured your HRV within the last 30 minutes. Just make sure you’ve synced your tracker to Welltory directly or via Apple Health, Google Fit, or Samsung Health.

If you’ve just started tracking your blood pressure

Why track blood pressure in the first place?

Blood pressure is a key indicator of cardiovascular health. If it falls outside the norm, this may be a signal that your health could be at risk.

Arterial blood pressure is the force with which blood pushes against your blood vessels. If it’s too high, there is a lot of pressure on your arteries, and your body as a whole. If it’s too low, your internal organs may not be getting adequate blood supply. Tracking your blood pressure regularly can help reduce your risk of stroke, heart attack, kidney failure, and many other problems.

Usually, blood pressure comprises two numbers — 120/80, for example. The top number is your systolic pressure — the pressure in your arteries when your heart contracts. The bottom number is your diastolic pressure, which is the pressure in your arteries between beats.

We analyze 5 other indexes on top of blood pressure. They give you more information about your cardiovascular system, like its resilience and current state. We can calculate these indexes when we have your heart rate along with a blood pressure reading.

What kind of blood pressure is considered normal?

According to ESC/ESH and if you only take into account systolic and diastolic numbers, then everything over 90/60 and below 120/80 is considered within the norm. The lower end of this range is situational and depends on the combination of your top and bottom numbers though. The European Society of Cardiology considers readings within the 120–129 / 80–84 range to be less than ideal, but still ok.

The same guidelines and other research (e.g. Clinical Methods: The History, Physical, and Laboratory Examinations) recommend to supplement top and bottom reading with two other numbers when analyzing blood pressure:

  • Mean arterial blood pressure (MABP) — the average blood pressure in your arteries in a cardiac cycle. It’s an indicator of adequate blood supply to your organs and can signal if there’s a risk of organ damage. It’s calculated with the following formula: diastolic pressure + (systolic pressure – diastolic pressure) / 3
    Normal range: 79.9–99.1.

  • Pulse pressure — the difference between your top and bottom numbers. It’s an assessment of cardiac output and vascular stiffness. Values that are too high or too low can be a sign of stress, as well as health problems. Normal range: 35–45.

Take, for example, a blood pressure reading of 115/72: these are solid numbers, because they’re over 90/60 and below 120/80. Plus, MABP is 86.33 and pulse pressure is 43 — all four indicators are within the norm.

However, a reading of 125/72 yields a pulse pressure value of 53, which is on the high end. While this is par for the course after a tough workout, it can otherwise be a signal that it’s time to consult your doctor.

When should I worry about high blood pressure?

Opinions vary somewhat from one country to the next, but there are no drastic differences. We use guidelines published by the European Society of Cardiology (ESC).

According to these guidelines, systolic pressure of 130–139 mmHg or diastolic pressure of 85–89 mmHg is elevated, but within the norm. Hypertension, or abnormally high blood pressure, starts with a top number of over 140 mmHg and a bottom number of over 90 mmHg. However, even if your blood pressure falls below these numbers while your MABP or pulse pressure are outside the normal range, it’s still best to talk to your doctor.

US guidelines set a more narrow normal range: a top number of 130–139 or bottom number of 80–89 mmHg is considered stage 1 hypertension.

We’ve posted the complete European and US guidelines below, but only a healthcare professional can diagnose you.

How do I know my blood pressure is too low?

There are no standardized norms here — it varies from one person to the next. But the Mayo Clinic, for example, considers it to be blood pressure below 90/60. We also use these numbers as a reference. It’s important to pay special attention to markers like MABP and pulse pressure in these cases. We take that into account in our interpretations.

When is the best time to measure blood pressure?

We recommend taking readings at the same time of day, so you can track trends and changes better. Use your blood pressure monitor and stick to the following rules (also suggested by the Mayo Clinic):

  • Don’t measure when you’re really cold

  • Go to the bathroom beforehand

  • Don’t smoke before a reading, wait at least 30 minutes

  • Avoid caffeine for an hour before taking a reading

  • Wait at least an hour after a meal

  • Don’t take readings after physical exertion or major emotional stressors

How do I take an accurate blood pressure measurement?

If you followed all the guidelines above, here’s how to take a reading with a blood pressure monitor:

  • If you’re wearing long sleeves, take off your shirt. It’s best to not roll up your sleeves — you might put pressure on your arteries.

  • Relax against the back of your chair. Both of your feet should be on the floor. Don’t cross your legs.

  • Sit calmly for five minutes so that your blood pressure stabilizes.

  • Place the forearm of the arm on which you will be measuring on a table or other horizontal surface at chest level, palm up. Relax your arm

  • Position the cuff as described in the instructions for your blood pressure monitor.

  • Take the reading.

Which arm should I take my blood pressure from?

If this is your first time, take one from both arms. Afterward, take readings from the arm where the numbers are higher.

How do I track my blood pressure trends?

On charts or in the blood pressure log.

Charts reflect changes in a more graphic way.

A blood pressure log is more of a tool for your doctor. It includes dates of your blood pressure measurements, your heart rate, systolic, and diastolic numbers, as well as measurement scores. You can access your blood pressure log right from your blood pressure measurement details:

The log will include a special link you can share with your physician. You can also easily print out the information you need from your browser.

Note that those having a link to your blood pressure log will be able to access it at any moment. Be careful who you share the link with.

If you’ve been tracking blood pressure for a long time

I know everything about my blood pressure, the norms, and keep a close eye on it. How can you help me?

You probably know full well that the latest guidelines recommend tracking MABP (means arterial blood pressure) and pulse pressure (the difference between your top and bottom numbers) along with your systolic and diastolic readings. We take these indicators into account when analyzing your measurement in order to give you a more complete interpretation.

Plus, if we have your heart rate data along with your reading, you’ll see another 5 indexes that will give you even more information about your cardiovascular system. You can use them to keep an eye on your resilience and see how well your cardiovascular system is running overall. For details, see Why track blood pressure in the first place? above.

Moreover, we automatically keep your blood pressure log — open it right from your blood pressure measurement details in Welltory Premium. You can also print it out or share it with your physician using a special link.

Why is a reading of 120/80 not considered ideal?

These numbers are considered to be within the norm in Europe. However, the latest blood pressure research from the US and Europe consider readings between 90/60 and 120/80 to be ideal.

What kinds of readings do you consider normal?

Our analysis is based on the guidelines published by the European Society of Cardiology (ESC). There are US guidelines as well. They are very similar, and both consider blood pressure readings from 90/60 to 120/80 to be within the norm. They have different scales for high blood pressure. But in any case, only a medical professional can diagnose you.

My blood pressure falls outside the norm, but it’s normal for me and I feel fine. I’m ok, right?

Not necessarily. You might not feel that something is wrong. First, high blood pressure doesn’t always come with additional symptoms. Second, your body may have simply adjusted to high blood pressure if it’s normal for you. But this doesn’t mean high blood pressure is ok. For example, readings over 130/90 put you at a higher risk of stroke and other problems no matter how you feel objectively. It’s a good idea to keep an eye on this kind of blood pressure and try to lower it.

Did this answer your question?