We hear quite often about hypertension and high blood pressure, and we’re well aware of how much money Americans spend on statins and beta blockers, and the over $90 billion that the U.S. spent on healthcare costs related to hypertension in 2010, but did you know that 30% of American adults have prehypertension! That’s more than 70 million adults! Take into consideration that about 65 million adults have actual hypertension, that’s an amazing amount of individuals who are at risk for heart disease and stroke.

What is Prehypertension?

Hypertension is ‘slightly elevated blood pressure’ that is not quite hypertension, but on the verge. In most cases, prehypertension will turn into hypertension if lifestyle changes are not made immediately. Prehypertension is a warning, a very strong warning, that you are on the verge of a serious medical condition and you absolutely must change your habits. It’s a wakeup call, is what it is.

Not too long ago, a normal blood pressure reading would be about 120/80, where your systolic reading is 120 and your diastolic reading is 80. However, this all changed when researchers began discovering how much of an impact high blood pressure does have on your heart health. According to WebMD, starting as low as 115/75, the risk of heart attack and stroke doubles for every 20-point jump in systolic blood pressure or every 10-point rise in diastolic blood pressure.

“We’ve also learned that people age 55 and older, who currently have normal blood pressure, have a 90% risk of developing high blood pressure down the road,” says Aram Chobanian, MD, Dean of Boston University School of Medicine, who chaired the guidelines committee.

How Can I Avoid Prehypertension?

If you take a look at the statistics, and the blood pressure numbers, it’s pretty obvious that there’s a pretty good chance you could become one of the statistics, if you’re not already. And the sad part about prehypertension is that our lives as Americans are full of bad habits, too much cholesterol, not enough nuts and veggies, and even over-the-counter medications and unavoidable environmental toxins.

Of course, there are those bad habits that put us at risk for prehypertension; those ones that are within our control such as diet, weight, activity levels, and alcohol or drug use. You do have control over these aspects of your life, and you can directly affect whether you will be a statistic or not.

Avoiding prehypertension involves changing your lifestyle. As I said before, a prehypertension diagnosis is a wakeup call. It’s a call to action, a second chance to change your life before it’s too late. Before you are stuck on beta blockers and statins and living every day in fear of a heart attack. Before you get to that point, talk with your doctor about eating healthy foods like nuts and veggies. Talk to a trainers about maintaining a healthy weight and exercise routine. Limit your alcohol intake. And, of course, take your supplements with l-arginine and red wine extract.

Interested in learning more about how L-Arginine can Lower Your Blood Pressure?