How do you know if you are at risk for high blood pressure?

People who seem to be at greater risk of developing high blood pressure include those who:

  • Have a family history of high blood pressure (for example, a parent, a brother, or a sister)
  • Are overweight
  • Are African American
  • Eat too much salt or sodium in their diet
  • Have diabetes
  • Drink too much alcohol
  • Are under stress or depressed
  • Do not exercise
  • Are taking birth control pills
  • Have a high cholesterol level
  • Smoke
  • Are over the age of 50
  • Are prehypertensive (have a systolic pressure of 120 - 139 and a dystolic pressure of 80 - 89)

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Written by: Janice C. May, M.P.A.
Reviewed by: Jeffrey G. Schultze, M.D.
Last Modified: Thursday September 26, 2019 9:09 AM