The number of children with high blood pressure spiked more than a quarter over a 13 year period.

Researchers at Harvard Medical School compared large groups of children who participated in health surveys ending in 1994 and 2008. They found risk of high blood pressure went up 27 percent during that time.

Boys were more likely to have elevated numbers compared to girls and the risk was higher among African American children compared to other ethnicities.

An increase in body weight and salty food consumption are likely behind the increase.

Related links:

NBC: Salty snacks, extra pounds send blood pressure soaring in U.S. kids

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