According to the Centers for Disease Control, about 68 million adults in the U.S. are living with high blood pressure, or hypertension. That’s 1 in 3 people.
But while its nicknamed “the silent killer,” there are things you can do to fight back against hypertension:
- Consume less salt. Most Americans eat twice the 1500 mg of sodium that’s recommended. Reducing your salt intake by avoiding processed and pre-packaged foods and eating more fruits and vegetables will have a positive effect on your blood pressure.
- Maintain a healthy body weight. Being overweight or obese increases your chance of developing hypertension.
- Don’t smoke. Smokers, on average, have higher blood pressure than non-smokers.
- Restrict alcohol consumption. Drinking more than one drink a day for women and two a day for men has been linked to high blood pressure.
If you’ve been diagnosed with high blood pressure, read Vitals’ High Blood Pressure Patient Guide for information on how to prepare for your next doctor visit, questions to ask, and what to expect.