Blood pressure meter and cuff

Three stars from the upcoming movie Barbershop: The Next Cut are teaming up to raise awareness about the dangers of uncontrolled high blood pressure.

Cedric the Entertainer, Regina Hall and Anthony Anderson will appear in public service announcements that reinforce the importance of getting blood pressure checks and taking steps to control it. The outdoor, digital, radio and TV PSAs, produced by the Ad Council and American Heart Association, will be out by mid-April.

“Millions of at-risk Americans can learn about the serious and often fatal consequences of hypertension through education,” said Mark Creager, M.D., director of the Heart and Vascular Center at the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, New Hampshire, and president of the AHA.

Participants will be able to join a mobile-based blood pressure management program. Users will get quizzes, games and tips for controlling their blood pressure. Studies show that text message intervention may reduce blood pressure and help participants stick to a plan. One study from the University of Oxford showed that those who used text reminders significantly improved their blood pressure.

Nearly 80 million Americans, or one in three adults, have high blood pressure, but only half have it under control. Untreated high blood pressure is a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke.

Barbershop: The Next Cut opens nationwide April 15.