Each year since 2006 on May 17th, the World Hypertension League (WHL), in close partnership with the International Society of Hypertension (ISH) and other organizations, has hosted World Hypertension Day (WHD). For the five-year period 2013-2018, the theme of WHD will be ‘Know Your Numbers’ with the goal of increasing high blood pressure awareness in all populations around the world.
Hypertension, also known as high or raised blood pressure, is a condition in which the blood vessels have persistently raised pressure. Blood is carried from the heart to all parts of the body in the vessels. Each time the heart beats, it pumps blood into the vessels. Blood pressure is created by the force of blood pushing against the walls of blood vessels (arteries) as it is pumped by the heart. The higher the pressure the harder the heart has to pump.
Normal blood pressure: generally less than 120/80 mmHg (i.e. systolic blood pressure less than 120 and diastolic blood pressure less than 80 mmHg). Normalto high blood pressure: between 120/80 and 140/90 mmHg. High blood pressure: 140/90 mmHg or higher.
Preventing High Blood Pressure: Healthy Living HabitsBy living a healthy lifestyle, you can help keep your blood pressure in a healthy range and lower your risk for heart disease and stroke. A healthy lifestyle includes:
- Eating a healthy diet.
- Maintaining a healthy weight.
- Getting enough physical activity.
- Not smoking.
- Limiting alcohol use.