Blood pressure

The ideal blood pressure reading is at or under 120/80 mmHg.

Long term high blood pressure is known as hypertension – a reading of 140/90 mmHg over several weeks. It is one of the main risk factors for stroke and heart disease.

Early signs of high blood pressure

Approximately 46% of people do not know they have high blood pressure.  It is important to get hypertension diagnosed and managed. These are some of the symptoms:

  • Vision problems
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Fatigue
  • Headache
  • Pounding in your neck, ears or chest

Reduce the risk of high blood pressure

  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Get sufficient, regular physical exercise
  • Do not smoke
  • Know your family history of high blood pressure
  • Relaxation practices to reduce and manage stress
  • No more than two drinks of alcohol per day
  • Know your numbers – check your blood pressure regularly
  • Sit less

Living with high blood pressure

  • Follow a healthy diet, eating plenty of fruit and vegetables, and reducing salt intake.  Reduce or eliminate added sugar and refined carbohydrates.
  • Be physically active – 150 minutes per week of low to moderate intensity
  • Measure your blood pressure regularly
  • Stop smoking
  • Reduce your alcohol intake
  • Manage your stress


  • Walking
  • Relaxation, mindfulness, meditation
  • Dancing
  • Tennis
  • Swimming
  • Yoga & pilates

Useful links

Research & education