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Table 9 Lifestyle and dietary recommendations to reduce high blood pressure values

From: Focus on prevention, diagnosis and treatment of hypertension in children and adolescents

Goals  
BMI in the normal weight range: maintain BMI to prevent overweight
BMI in the overweight range: weight maintenance in younger children or gradual weight loss in older children and adolescents to return to the normal weight range
BMI in the obesity range: gradual weight loss (1–2 kg/month) to achieve normal weight
General recommendations  
Moderate to vigorous physical aerobic activity for 40 min, 3–5 days/week and avoid more than 2 h of daily sedentary activities (besides school hours)
Participation in (competitive) sports activities limited only in the presence of uncontrolled stage 2 hypertension
Avoid severe dietary restrictions, reduce portion size, stimulate the habit of having breakfast
Limit salt intake
Avoid intake of excess sugar, excess soft drinks, saturated and trans fat, animal protein
Drink water
Stimulate the intake of healthy food (fruit, vegetables, legumes, whole grain products, fish)
Implement the behavioral changes (physical activity and diet) suitable for individual and family characteristics
Establish realistic goals
Involve the family, caregivers, teachers and other educators in the process of dietary and life-style changes
Provide educational support and materials
Develop reward systems (non-food) to achieve healthy behavior
  1. Lurbe et al. “Management of High Blood Pressure in Children and Adolescents: recommendations of the ESH”. Journal of Hypertension 2009[2] (modified).