About 25% of adults have hypertension (high BP). A third don?t know it. Be watchful of your blood pressure if you are:
Over 55. BP increases with age.
Overweight. People over their ideal weight are 2-6 times more likely to develop hypertension.
Physically inactive. People who are physically active have a 20%-50% lower risk of developing hypertension than those who are not active.
Eating excess salt. Sodium may elevate blood pressure if you are sensitive to it.
Diabetic. People with diabetes are 5 times more likely to suffer stroke, a major risk of hypertension.
A smoker. Smoking constricts blood vessels, including heart disease risk.
A heavy drinker. More than 1-2 drinks a day can raise your blood pressure.
The cause of hypertension?s are not fully understood, but there?s no mistaking the problems it can cause. Untreated, it can lead to heart attack, stroke and kidney disease. ?Regardless of age, know your blood pressure ? the actual numbers.? Advises Dr. Claude Lenfant, director of the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. Have it checked once a year. By age 45 or 50 it?s time to monitor your BP and keep it under control.
Author: Zeena Mascarenhas- USA