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Get to know your blood pressure.

Ignorance could be lethal. Nearly a third of people with high blood pressure, also called hypertension, are unaware they have it—and they're six times more likely to have congestive heart failure (and seven times more likely to suffer a stroke) than someone who has gotten her high blood pressure under control. Losing weight and reducing salt in your diet—the AHA suggests a max of one and a quarter teaspoons (2,400 milligrams) per day—are the two most effective ways to lower blood pressure; medications also help.