Now for some very positive health news. Due to greater awareness and likely a greater focus on one’s natural health, the rates of high blood pressure appear to be improving significantly. A new study found this to be true over the past 25 years in Canada, and its results can be remodeled for Canada’s close southern neighbor as well.
Every morsel of the best health advice includes monitoring one’s blood pressure levels. Hypertension (high levels) is a risk factor for vascular disease and death, but it can be managed properly by every one of us. Recent studies have indicated improvements in the prescribing rates of drugs to treat hypertension and consequent decreases in cardiovascular events related to high blood pressure.
In the new study, researchers looked at the measurement of blood pressure in people aged 20 to 79 who were living in the community (not in institutions) and who participated in either of two national health surveys. The analysis showed decreases in the number of hypertensive Canadians between 1992 and 2009 who were not being treated or not receiving adequate treatment to control their blood pressure.
Importantly, the percentage of people who were unaware of their condition had dropped from 43% to 17%. Systolic blood pressure levels were lower in people with treated hypertension and in people without high blood pressure in 2009 compared to 1992.
This means that, in society overall, people are successfully managing high blood pressure. And they are aware of it, which is a huge step in treatment. The rates of awareness, treatment and control shown in the surveys are higher than those recently reported from physical measures surveys done in the U.S. and elsewhere during the same periods. That means, in the U.S., more can be done to educate people about hypertension.
People with high blood pressure and heart disease were more likely to have their blood pressure under control. Still, despite such improvement over the past quarter-century, one-third of Canadian adults with hypertension still have higher blood pressure than recommended. And heart disease remains the most common cause of premature death and disability in Canada.
Take hypertension seriously before it takes you to serious consequences.