Lifestyle, habits, diet, and genetics are all important factors associated with the prevalence of hypertension. Many association studies have been performed in the Chinese Han population, whereas data explaining the high prevalence of hypertension in the Mongolian population remain scarce. In the present study, we aimed to determine the factors associated with the development of essential hypertension in Mongolians. A total of 194 hypertensive cases and 201 controls from Dongwu County were enrolled in the study. Demographics, anthropometric and blood biochemical parameters, food intake, lifestyle, habits, education, occupation, and family history were recorded for each subject. Genotype and allele frequencies of six single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) of the kallikrein 1 (KLK1) gene were also examined. Mean body mass index, waistline, hipline, blood sugar, blood urea nitrogen, creatinine, uric acid, total cholesterol, triglyceride, and low-density lipoprotein levels were all significantly higher in the hypertensive group (P 0.05). These results suggest that dietary history and habits have the most important influence on the development of essential hypertension in the Mongolian population.