Blood pressure guidelines address public health issues

Blood pressure guidelines address public health issues

Having a blood pressure of between 120/80 millimeters of mercury and 139/89 millimeters of mercury was categorized as prehypertension, whereby blood pressure levels are higher than normal, but are not high enough to be considered hypertensive. High blood pressure, or hypertension, is when this force becomes too high.

This is the first change in blood pressure standards since 2003.

Normal blood pressure is 120 over 80.

"Is it going to be hard to meet those blood pressure goals?" Diastolic pressure measures the blood's pressure against the artery walls when the heart rests in between heartbeats.

They say blood pressure should now be treated at 130/80 instead of 140/90.

Authors of the new guidelines say this change is meant to prevent people from waiting until their blood pressure is high to begin making lifestyle changes, which could reduce their risk of heart attack.

The new guidelines emphasize making sure blood pressure readings are accurate. You're also able to buy a machine to take your blood pressure at home.

As a quick refresher: The top number ( systolic blood pressure ) indicates the amount pressure that your blood puts on your arteries every time your heart beats.

Here are a few things that can help lower your blood without taking medication, courtesy of the Mayo Clinic.

If their risk of these conditions is less than 10 percent, then they should engage in lifestyle changes and be reassessed in 3-6 months.

Previously, it was estimated that around 1 in 3 adults in the US had high blood pressure.

According to the new guidelines, a systolic blood pressure readings between 130-139 is considered stage 1 hypertension and a reading over 140 is considered stage 2 hypertension.

Because the American Heart Association lowered the numbers, almost half the USA adult population is living with hypertension and at an increased risk for heart disease and stroke. Here's what people can do to lower their risk.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), being overweight can increase people's risk for high blood pressure. This diagnoses 103 million-about 46 percent-of American adults a diagnosis of hypertension, as opposed to 72 million Americans under the previous guidelines.

Dr. Michael Barr from UnityPoint Health Trinity says the new guidelines will help prevent heart attacks and strokes in at risk patients.