Keep tabs on your blood pressure; 7 signs to look for

The American Heart Association advises that keeping a check on your blood pressure is critical to heart health and preventing stroke.

In a press release, it states: Many individuals don't consider themselves to be candidates for high blood pressure, or know what to look for in terms of risk factors, which is why the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association has identified the seven top factors, listed below, that contribute to high blood pressure.

    --  Family History -- You share your dad's hair color and your mom's height

      but did you know that's not all you share in regards to your genetics?

      If your parents or a close blood relative have suffered from high blood

      pressure in the past, it puts you at risk as well. Do your research and

      get to know your family tree and your loved ones' medical history.

  --  Advanced Age - As we get older, we shouldn't be too concerned with the

      wrinkles we're showing. We all develop a risk for high blood pressure

      and cardiovascular diseases.  Blood vessels lose flexibility during the

      aging process which contributes to increasing pressure in your

      cardiovascular system.

  --  Gender Related Risk Patterns -- Who would have known?  Men tend to have

      a higher percentage of high blood pressure than women until age 45.

      Between ages 45 to 64, the percentages between men and

      women with high blood pressure are similar. After age 64, women have a

      much higher percentage of high blood pressure than men.

  --  Lack of Physical Activity -- It's time to stop making excuses and get

      out and get moving.  An inactive lifestyle increases your chances of

      having high blood pressure.  Give yourself the gift of improved health