Beginning with BP at 115/75 mmHg, cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk doubles for each increment of 20/10 mmHg; those who are normotensive, i.e., BP <120/80 mmHg, at age 55 will have a 90% lifetime risk of developing HTN and adoption of a healthy lifestyle is critical for the prevention of high BP.12 BP values between 130-139/85-89 mmHg are associated with a more than twofold increase in relative risk from CVD as compared with those with BP <120/80 mmHg.12 Prehypertensive individuals (BP 120-139/80-89) are not candidates for drug therapy and should be firmly and unambiguously advised that they require health-promoting lifestyle modifications to reduce their risk of progressive rise of BP in the future.12,17 Table 7 presents recommended lifestyle modifications to reduce the risk of developing HTN.12,17Table 7. Recommended Lifestyle Modifications to Reduce the Risk of Developing Hypertension.
|Modification||Recommendation||Approximate Reduction of SBP|
|Weight reduction||BMI between 18.5-24.9 kg/m2||5-20 mmHg/10 kg|
|Healthy diet||Diet rich in fruits, vegetables, low far dairy products; reduced content of saturated and total fat.||8-14 mmHg|
|Dietary sodium reduction||≤100 mmol, i.e., 2.4 g sodium or 6 g sodium chloride.||2-8 mmHg|
|Physical activity||Regular aerobic activity, e.g., brisk walking at least 30 min/day, most days of the week.||4-9 mmHg|
|Moderation of alcohol consumption||2 drinks/day for men and 1 drink/day for women, e.g., 24 oz. beer, 10 oz. wine, 3 oz. of 80-proof whiskey.||2-4 mmHg|
|For overall cardiovascular risk reduction, stop smoking.|