Sun, Apr 07, 2013 - Page 3 News List

One in 12 young adults has high blood pressure: survey

By Alison Hsiao  /  Staff reporter

National health surveys showed that one in 12 young adults (aged between 20 and 39) has high blood pressure.

However, due to a lack of frequent checks, three-quarters of those with the condition that can lead to heart disease and stroke do not know they are suffering from it.

As a reminder on World Health Day, which is celebrated every year on April 7, the Bureau of Health Promotion cautioned young adults against unhealthy eating and lifestyles which, when combined with excessive work pressure, can easily result in hypertension, or high blood pressure.

According to the survey, Taiwanese women and men aged between 19 and 30 consume 4,096mg and 4,599mg of sodium a day respectively, which far exceeds the recommended average daily sodium intake level of less than 2,000mg.

Bureau chief Chiou Shu-ti (邱淑媞) warned that hot pot and processed food products eaten with hot pot contain a very high amount of sodium.

As a high sodium intake is one of the major causes of hypertension, it is no surprise that one in every 12 young Taiwanese adults suffers from high blood pressure, he said.

Another national survey shows that the rate of hypertension self-awareness among people in the age group of 20 to 39 is as low as 26 percent, meaning that three out of every four young Taiwanese adults may be unaware of the fact that they have high blood pressure.

The bureau said that as hypertension is one of the major risk factors contributing to stroke, heart disease and kidney disease, making those with high blood pressure 2.84 times, 1.93 times and 1.66 times more likely to develop those conditions, the public is advised to consume less sodium, maintain a healthy and balanced diet, exercise regularly, avoid tobacco and excessive drinking and take regular blood pressure checks.

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