Have your blood pressure checked at regular intervals (as recommended by your health care provider) to monitor the condition. Frequent blood pressure measurements taken at home are often recommended for people with difficult-to-control high blood pressure.
Treat your high blood pressure. Do not stop or change treatment, except on the advice of your health care provider.
In addition to medications, recommended lifestyle changes include:
- Diet changes:
- Avoid trans fats and saturated fats
- Increase fruits, vegetables, and low-fat dairy products
- Reduce salt intake (may be beneficial)
- Eat whole grains, poultry, and fish
- Exercise regularly
- Reduce excessive alcohol consumption
- Stop smoking -- cigarettes are a major cause of hypertension-related heart disease
- Lose weight if you are overweight or obese
Victor RG, Kaplan NM. Systemic hypertension: mechanisms and diagnosis. In: Libby P, Bonow RO, Mann DL, Zipes DP, eds. Braunwald's Heart Disease: A Textbook of Cardiovascular Medicine. 8th ed. Philadelphia, Pa; Saunders Elsevier; 2007: chap 40.
Review Date: 06/22/2010
Reviewed By: Issam Mikati, MD, Associate Professor of Medicine, Feinberg School of Medicine, Director, Northwestern Clinic Echocardiography Lab, Northwest. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.