Fruits/Veggies Part Of The Recipe For Reducing Chances Of High Blood Pressure
that center on such health behavior as getting regular physical
activity, controlling weight, and eating a nutritious diet that
includes lots of fruits and vegetables and moderate amounts of salt,
are the secret ingredients that can reduce a person’s chances of
developing high blood pressure, according to researchers involved in a
new study of high blood pressure.
The number of
adults in the United States with high blood pressure increased 30
percent over the last decade (from 1988-94 to 1999-2000), found the
study which was published in "Hypertension: Journal of the American
At least 65
million Americans have hypertension, defined as blood pressure of
140/90 millimeters of mercury (mm Hg) or higher, using blood-pressure
lowering medications, or having been told at least twice by a physician
or other health professional that they had high blood pressure (medical
history), the study found. By that definition, almost a third of U.S.
adults have hypertension.
bottom line is that the estimated number of adults with high blood
pressure has increased,” said Larry E. Fields, M.D., lead author
of the study and senior executive advisor to the assistant secretary of
the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).
blood pressure is a major risk factor for coronary heart disease,
kidney failure, heart failure, stroke and other conditions. From a
public and health professional perspective, it is important to be aware
of high blood pressure, to have blood pressure checked regularly, and
if blood pressure is elevated, to initiate appropriate counseling and
treatment,” he said.
came from an analysis of data from the U.S. Census Bureau and the
19992000 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) IV,
which included 4,531 people. The study was limited to people at least
18 years old. The new estimate is much higher compared to the previous
NHANES report (16,351 participants from 1988-94) that estimated at
least 50 million U.S. adults had high blood pressure.
Blood pressure values were based on three measurements that a physician took once in a mobile examination center.
his associates estimated that 59.2 million people had hypertension on
the basis of blood pressure measurements or prescriptions for blood
pressure medication. More than 6 million people had high blood pressure
based on their medical history, resulting in an estimated total of 65.2
million hypertensive adults.
the age-related association with high blood pressure, the number of
people with hypertension was about 4.4 million in the 1834 age group; 8
million in the 3544 group; 12.712.8 million in the 4554 and 5564 age
groups; 13.2 million in the 6574 age group, and 14.1 million in the
75-and-older age group.
survey shows that 28.7 percent of women and 28.3 percent of men have
high blood pressure. When prevalence was divided along racial/ethnic
categories, non-Hispanic black Americans have the highest prevalence at
38.8 percent. High blood pressure is prevalent in 28.7 percent of the
Mexican American population, and in 27.2 percent of the non-Hispanic
The study did
not specifically examine potential reasons for the increased prevalence
of high blood pressure. However, the investigators cited the aging of
the U.S. population and the growing proportion of overweight and obese
Americans as potential major contributors. Older age, excess weight and
lack of physical activity all increase the risk of hypertension.
investigators hope increased awareness of the prevalence and health
risks of high blood pressure will lead to better evaluation and
treatment of the condition and to a greater focus on prevention.
co-authors are Vicki L. Burt, ScM, R.N.; Jeffery A. Cutler, M.D.,
M.P.H.; Edward J. Roccella, Ph.D., M.P.H.; Paul Sorlie, Ph.D.; and
Jeffery Hughes, M.P.H.
Source: Hypertension: Journal of the American Heart Association,
American Heart Association