Hypertension and African Americans


The graph above shows how hypertension of different races in the United States however African Americans hold the highest place.

I chose hypertension, which is also known as high blood pressure. High blood pressure increases a person’s risk of heart disease and stroke, kidney disease, blindness and dementia. It is known as the silent killer because you don’t really show any symptoms of hypertension until it gets really serious. According to this article African Americans respond differently to high blood pressure drugs than other groups of people and they seem to be more sensitive to salt which increases the chance of African Americans having high blood pressure.

Some of the risk along with being African American that makes you at risk for developing high blood pressure is increased age, excessive weight, a family history of blood pressure, diabetes, inactivity, having a high diet in fat and salt, a low intake of potassium and smoking.  You can check your blood pressure regularly to help prevent hypertension.

The relationship between race, genetics and health are pretty interesting.  According to the materials from class everyone wants to tie health to your race which is where your genetics come from.  Depending on what race you are depends on which genetics you receive which can affect your health. A person’s race cannot be determined by their genes but simply their social and cultural belief or surroundings. Sometimes you will come across a situation where a person’s health is affected due to their genes and not their surroundings.

Yes I believe that your health has something to do with your genetics, environment, your life choices and your body but it cannot be because of race. You can have a certain group of people that has a higher risk to an illness more than others but your race should not be one of them.


“High Blood Pressure in African-Americans: Genetics, Risks, Causes, and More.”WebMD. WebMD, n.d. Web. 09 July 2014.



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