Do you know what your blood pressure is? Most of us only think about our blood pressure when we visit our doctor for a checkup. Even fewer of us know what those numbers mean and whether those numbers are a sign of good health or not so good health.

Experts in the field of heart health have released new guidelines on what high blood pressure is, at least as far as a medical condition is concerned. If your blood pressure is 130 over 80 then you are now considered to have Stage 1 hypertension.

If your blood pressure numbers are 140 over 90 that is considered to be Stage 2 and if your blood pressure is 180 over 120 or higher then you are considered to be in hypertensive crisis.

If you're wondering, under the previous guidelines a person wasn't considered to have high blood pressure until the top number hit 140. These new guidelines will mean a lot of us who were considered borderline hypertensive will now fall into the positive category.

The best way to treat high blood pressure is through lifestyle changes. That is a fancy way to say eat healthier and exercise more. Your alcohol consumption might need to be reduced as well. Those are questions you'll need to ask your doctor.

The good news is that high blood pressure can be controlled through lifestyle modification and medication. Left unchecked the disease can be a leading factor in heart attacks and strokes. You don't want that.

The bottom line is this. Know your numbers, talk to your doctor, and do what you have to do. We want you around for a long time to come.


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