Hypertension, it seems, is no longer a primary concern just among adults. According to a study published in the journal Hypertension, high blood pressure among children and teens has increased by as much as 27 percent over the past 13 years, during which the entire research was conducted.
The biggest risk factors identified were obesity as well as an increase in the intake of sodium, commonly found in highly-processed food. Scientists believe though that there is still a lack of evidence to this claim, since the negative effect of salt on blood pressure has only been proven detrimental among adults.
Study researcher Dr. Bonita Falkner, professor of medicine and pediatrics at Thomas Jefferson University, explains that adults on average should just have a blood pressure no higher than 120/80 mm Hg, whereas for children, it varies depending on his or her age, height and sex.
In extreme cases in children, some possible diseases that may result due to high blood pressure are kidney disease, heart problems or hormonal imbalance.
Parents are urged to encourage a healthier diet that is low in fat, low in sodium and low in sugar.