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What Increases the Risk for Hypertension or Worsens It?

What Are the Risk Factors?

While not hypertension causes in and of themselves, there are certain traits that can increase a person's chance of developing high blood pressure. These are known as hypertension risk factors and include:
 
  • Being overweight
  • Having diabetes
  • Being of African-American descent
  • Eating a lot of salty foods
  • Being a male over the age of 45 or a female over the age of 55.
     
Although more men have hypertension than women, women do increase their risk of developing the condition if they take birth control pills.
 

What Makes It Worse?

Hypertension can be made worse by different things. A few factors that can make hypertension worse include:
 
  • Excessive alcohol consumption
  • A diet high in fat and/or salt
  • Smoking
  • A lack of exercise
  • Prolonged and poorly managed stress.
     
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