You know you're in the hood when... you hear someone explain away a health condition as serious as hypertension saying " You know it runs in their family...." Huh!!! ARE YOU KIDDING ME??? If hypertension, also know as 'high blood pressure' is common in your family, everyone is failing to take care of themselves on the most basic levels. One of the most common misconceptions about hypertension is that it can not be prevented. While there are definite risk factors, HYPERTENSION IS PREVENTABLE!! We all know that we should eat a healthy diet with a good balance of sugars, fats, proteins and vegetables, in amounts appropriate for our bodies. We also know that we should integrate a healthy amount of exercise that keeps us strong and often reduces stress. So why then, do we insist on eating too much, eat the wrong things and blow off exercise? Probably the same reason that we drink too much, smoke at all and add too much salt to our high stress lifestyles. Could it be that we don't really treasure health? Or that we are so unwilling to break away from the masses who justify overindulgence and neglect, to the point that we are willing to manage the steady deterioration of our one and only body with all of the pain, discomfort and certain death that that decision brings. Whatever the reason, let us be clear- High Blood Pressure Kills and you do not get to choose how. It could be quickly in the form of a heart attack or slow with damage to your kidneys blood vessels and other organs. In a conversation last weekend about one of my favorites (barely 30 yrs old with a wonderful family, friends that adore him and the promises of God on his heart) who is hospitalized for an unruly, unchecked blood pressure, it became apparent that health is a choice that we, very often, believe that we can put off. We cannot!