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Blood pressure and alcoholAlcohol and blood pressure

Studies from all over the world show that regularly drinking alcohol raises your blood pressure, and significantly increases your chance of long-term high blood pressure (also known as ‘hypertension’).

High blood pressure occurs when your heart has to work harder to push blood around your body. Without treatment, it increases your risk of stroke, heart disease, vascular dementia (caused by not enough blood getting to the brain) and chronic kidney disease. 


Scary fact alert:

Regularly drinking alcohol increases your risk of developing high blood pressure. Just one drink a day can push up your blood pressure, and this risk gets higher and higher the more you drink; regardless of your age, weight, gender, ethnicity, your diet or even whether you smoke or not.


Around one in three adults in Wales have high blood pressure. It’s often referred to as ‘the silent killer’ as it rarely has obvious symptoms.

The good news is that there’s plenty you can do to prevent high blood pressure. The simple fact is that drinking less alcohol is likely to help lower your blood pressure if it’s too high, regardless of your age or any other factor. Take at look at our easy tips for drinking less and enjoying more.

Making sure you eat well, including eating plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables, and cutting down on saturated facts (usually hard fats like butter and fatty meat) will also help you maintain healthy blood pressure. Regular exercise will help too. The video below gives more tips on reducing high blood pressure (courtesy of TheExpressOnline).

Find out more about the effects of alcohol on your health and read our factsheet on alcohol and blood pressure.

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