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Modern life and high BP

20th April 2007

According to a recent study, more than half of the adults in the UK could suffer from high blood pressure by 2025.

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This week, the European Parliament reviewed research presented in the report, which was part-authored by the London School of Economics (LSE). It warns stress and poor diet could substantially increase the number of heart disease cases in the UK.

Currently, 16 million people in the UK (one third) have high blood pressure. The study reports this figure could rise to 22 million, meaning half the adult population would be affected.

High blood pressure is the principal cause of heart disease and stroke deaths. The condition can usually be helped or stabilised by lifestyle changes and medical treatment. Simple modifications, such as a healthier diet, a lowered salt intake and more exercise, can ensure high blood pressure is kept in check.

The LSE’s Dr Panos Kanavos, who co-authored the report, said that the rise in high blood pressure would cause an increase in the number of cardiovascular and stroke cases. He predicted a future where many adults would become “long-term recipients of social benefits with increased healthcare needs".

Professor Bryan Williams, of the British Hypertension Society, told the Mail: "High blood pressure is a silent killer…the only way to confidently detect the fact you have high blood pressure is to have it checked.?

"It is incredibly important to identify people because it is often a portent of problems."

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