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Date of last update: 10/20/2017.

Forum Name: Hypertension

Question: Do I have a chance lowering BP by losing weight. Age - 21

 BoogaMooga - Sat Aug 25, 2007 4:49 pm

Thank you doctors for reading this.

Last week I found out I have high blood pressure (160 systolic). I have gone on a heavy on fruit/vegetable diet and have been exercising daily and plan to be doing so daily for the rest of my life. I am an obese male and have finally received my wake up call. Is there any chance that I can ever get my blood pressure normal or near normal if I reach my normal weight if you take out hereditary factors? Has anyone ever lowered their systolic by 20 or more points? Thank you very much, I hope you can tell how worried I am.

P.S. How ironic is it that I am a pre-med student with a 3.8 gpa entering my senior year and I have put myself in this situation.
 Dr. Chan Lowe - Sat Aug 25, 2007 5:39 pm

User avatar Hi BoogaMooga,

Diet and exercise can have very significant effects on the body's blood pressure. Eating a low salt, health diet is important. Exercise also affects blood pressure. As your weight comes down your blood pressure will also likely improve.

If this turns out not to be enough, even though it may very well be, there are some excellent medications now that can bring blood pressure into appropriate range.

Best wishes and good luck in medical school.
 Dr. Tamer Fouad - Sat Aug 25, 2007 9:52 pm

User avatar As Dr. Chan explained this may very well be enough and will improve your quality of life for sure. What is important to remember is that any young patient with persistently high blood pressure must be evaluated immediately. The causes of high blood pressure in young adults (eg. 20s) are often serious and need to be sought.

One of the commonest causes in this category is renal artery stenosis as well as pheochromocytoma which manifests as persistent hypertension in young adults more often than the 'classic' picture with hypertensive attacks.

Please get an evaluation as soon as possible and be sure to update us on the results of this assessment.

Best regards,

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