Michigan Association of Health Plans

Understanding high blood pressure

This article was posted on the Molina blog. Read more here

High blood pressure happens when your blood pushes too hard against your artery walls. People call it the “silent killer” because it usually doesn’t have any signs. But if you don’t treat it, it can cause big problems like heart disease, stroke and kidney issues.

Understanding the risk factors:

Several factors can lead to the development of high blood pressure, including:

  • Unhealthy diet: Eating unhealthy foods with lots of salt, fats and cholesterol
  • Lack of physical activity: Not moving around enough, which can make you gain too much weight
  • Smoking: Smoking can hurt your blood vessels and raise blood pressure
  • Family history: If others in your family have had high blood pressure, you might get it too
  • Stress: Feeling stressed a lot can also raise your blood pressure over time

Prevention and management:

But here’s some good news. You can usually keep your blood pressure in check with some changes to your lifestyle. Here’s what you can do:

  • Healthy diet: Eat more fruits, veggies, whole grains and lean meats, and less salt, fats and sugars
  • Regular exercise: Move your body more by doing activities like walking
  • Maintain a healthy weight: Try to stay at a healthy weight, even if it’s just a little bit less than before
  • Limit alcohol: Don’t drink too much alcohol
  • Stress management: Relax and take breaks to de-stress, maybe by trying yoga or taking deep breaths
  • Regular checkups: Check your blood pressure often and tell your doctor if it’s usually high

If you have concerns about your blood pressure, seek help from your doctor. They can give you advice and treatment options to meet your needs.

  back to blog