Millions more people around the world have high blood pressure. For many decades, doctors said high blood pressure started at a reading of 140 over 90. The American Heart Association (AHA) changed these numbers. It said the disease should be treated sooner. It said high blood pressure now starts at 130 over 80. Blood pressure is when your heart pushes blood around your body. If this pushing is too strong, it puts stress on your heart and arteries. This can lead to heart attacks and strokes. Normal blood pressure is less than 120 over 80.
Health problems can happen at 130 over 80. The AHA said it is possible for people to have this level of blood pressure without medicine. The new reading is "a yellow light" that warns you need to lower your blood pressure, mainly without medicine. People with high blood pressure need to make lifestyle changes. They should lose weight, exercise more, eat healthier food, avoid alcohol and salt, quit smoking, and avoid stress. The new reading of 130 over 80 means that 46 per cent of adults in the USA have high blood pressure. This is up from 32 per cent using the old numbers.