April 7th is World Health Day

Blood PressureWorld Health Day was established to celebrate the founding of the World Health Organization (WHO) over sixty years ago in 1948. Each year, the WHO chooses a topic to bring awareness to a major public health issue.

This year’s focus is on high blood pressure, or hypertension.

High blood pressure is an underlying risk factor for many other health problems like heart attacks and strokes. Unfortunately, high blood pressure is exceedingly common in the world today, affecting one in three adults throughout the world.

While it’s a pretty well-known issue, hypertension is not always well-managed by individuals who have it, simply because many people are unaware they even have high blood pressure. People who don’t have regular access to healthcare, or those who do, but don’t visit their doctor regularly, may not know their blood pressure is consistently elevated above normal levels. Part of the reason for this is that high blood pressure is not symptomatic—it’s not like having a cold—so it can go untreated for a long time.

That’s the goal of World Health Day this year: to bring awareness to the issue and give people the resources and information they need to be checked or treated for high blood pressure.

You may be aware of high blood pressure as a prevalent health issue, but are you aware of how it relates to your health?

The Good News

Not only is high blood pressure treatable, it’s preventable! We are confronted every day with things that cause or contribute to high blood pressure—things like sodium levels in our food, alcohol consumption, a lack of exercise, and cigarette smoking.

By becoming aware of these things and how they affect us, and then working to incorporate healthier choices into our daily lives and routines, we can prevent high blood pressure and drastically reduce our risk for heart disease and other health issues.

Although many environmental factors can cause high blood pressure, for example, nutrition, stress and exercise (or lack of it), your family history can also affect your risk. If your family has a history of heart disease, stroke, or heart attacks, you may want to get your blood pressure checked regularly, and take preventative measures if your body tends toward hypertension.

To learn more about World Health Day, and the year’s priority health topic, high blood pressure, visit the WHO’s website.

Photo by: Nelson Pavlosky

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The information on this website is designed for educational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for informed medical advice or care. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat any health problems or illnesses without consulting your pediatrician or family doctor. Please consult a doctor with any questions or concerns you might have regarding your or your child's condition. Please consult your doctor before attempting any of the exercises, remedies, or health tips on this website to make sure you are healthy enough to do so.
About Jessica

I'm a writer, blogger, and just your average gal trying to live a healthy, happy life. I'm no expert, but my knowledge comes firsthand from my own dieting, exercise, and overall wellness experiences. Tweet me @cultivate happy!

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