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Prioritise healthy living for longevity, medical experts advise hypertensive patients

By Abigail Ikhaghu
17 May 2022   |   3:27 am
As Nigerians join the rest of the world to mark the 2022 World Hypertension Day (WHD) today, medical experts have warned that more than one billion persons are hypertensive..

As Nigerians join the rest of the world to mark the 2022 World Hypertension Day (WHD) today, medical experts have warned that more than one billion persons are hypertensive, with the figure estimated to hit 1.5 billion by 2025.

The World Hypertension League (WHL), composed of many societies and leagues globally, instituted the WHD in May 2005.

Theme for this year’s event is: “Measure Your Blood Pressure Accurately, Control It, Live Longer.”
Cardiovascular ailments (heart diseases) are the commonest cause of death affecting about 38 per cent of the adult population just as hypertension.

Chairman, Nigerian Health Foundation (NHF) Hypertension Committee, Prof. Basden Onwubere, who spoke during a Zoom, organised by the foundation to commemorate the WHD, said more than half of the individuals living with hypertension were unaware of the ailment, as awareness levels in some of these countries are less than 30 per cent.

A nationwide survey in Nigeria published about two decades ago by Akinkugbe ET Al put awareness level for hypertension at 30 per cent, even as recent publications had not shown any significant improvement.

Onwubere canvassed adequate control of the sickness, urging reduction in salt consumption and “No added salt” after food had been prepared.

He advised that, “it is better to maintain healthy weight, avoid sedentary lifestyles and exercise at least 30 minutes daily.”

NHF’s Executive Director, Dr. Kingsley Akinroye, said the foundation was partnering with some local councils, government, pharmaceutical companies, churches, schools, hospitals and others to spread the crusade.

“There is a charge to the government, medical experts, institutional bodies, elite and the likes to go back to our communities and create awareness about hypertension in ways in which it can be prevented and controlled,” he added.

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