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Healtheuniversity > English > Diabetes College > Take Control > Your Healthy Targets > Blood Pressure

Blood Pressure

Your blood pressure reading tells your doctor how strong your heart is.

A healthy target for blood pressure is:

  • less than 130 mmHg for systolic pressure and
  • less than 80 mmHg for diastolic pressure

This goal blood pressure varies from person to person. Talk to your doctor about the right blood pressure for you.

When your heart beats, blood is pushed out of your heart and around your body. As your blood travels, it pushes against your artery walls. Blood pressure is the strength of this pushing.

What Does My Blood Pressure Reading Mean?

Blood pressure is measured in millimetres of mercury (mmHg). Millimetres of mercury (mmHg) measures the pressure of blood in your arteries.

A blood pressure reading is expressed in two numbers such as 120/80 mmHg. Both blood pressure numbers are important.

  • The top number is the strength when the heart pumps. This is called systolic blood pressure.
  • The bottom number is the strength when the heart relaxes. This is called diastolic blood pressure.

A normal blood pressure with your diabetes is less than 130/80 mmHg. This goal blood pressure varies from person to person. Talk to your doctor about the right blood pressure for you.

Why Do I Need to Monitor My Blood Pressure?

High blood pressure can have no warning signs. No signs is a problem because high blood pressure is harmful. Over time, high blood pressure damages your heart (heart attack), brain (stroke) and kidneys (nephropathy).

People living with diabetes often have high blood pressure. Have your blood pressure checked at each doctor's visit. Your doctor may ask you to monitor your blood pressure at home. 

How Do I Reach My Blood Pressure Target?

Know your blood pressure numbers to know if you are controlling your blood pressure. Your blood pressure goal is less than 130/80 mmHg.

If your blood pressure is below 130/80 mmHg, continue with your healthy habits.

  • Continue your healthy habits such as healthy eating, doing exercise, stress control and medicines.

If your blood pressure is more than 130/80 mmHg, talk to your doctor.

  • Ask your doctor what you can do to lower your blood pressure.
  • Lower your blood pressure with healthy eating, doing exercise, stress control and taking your medicines. Talk to your doctor for help.

Learn how to lower your blood pressure by reducing the sodium in your diet ยป

Last Reviewed: 10/22/2016