In a new study, researchers from Duke University School of Medicine in Durham, NC, found that lifestyle modifications in individuals with resistant hypertension can help lose weight, increase physical activity, and reduce blood pressure which potentially lowers the risk of a heart attack or stroke.
For their study, the scientists recruited 140 people with resistant hypertension and an average age of 63 years. Among the participants, 48% of patients were female, 59% were black, 31% had diabetes, and 21% had chronic kidney disease. All participants had a body mass index (BMI) of 25 or higher at the baseline of the study and did not engage in regular moderate or vigorous physical activity.
All participants were randomly divided into two 4-month treatment groups, one of which was prescribed to follow the DASH diet and perform exercises for 30-45 minutes three times a week. The second group received a one-hour lecture on blood pressure management and a workbook with diet plans and exercise program.
After the completion of 4-month program, the researchers noted 12-point drop in resting systolic blood pressure in the supervised group, while the self-guided group demonstrated 7 points.
A new study from the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon, Canada, suggests that stretching can be more efficient than brisk walking at lowering high blood pressure for people suffering from hypertension.
In this study, the researchers recruited almost 40 men and women whose average age was 61 years. The participants were divided into two groups and were assigned either stretching or walking. None of the participants knew the purpose of the trial.
All participants performed the assigned activity for 8 weeks. After this period, the researchers analyzed the received data and notices that those who did stretching had greater reductions in their blood pressure than those who walked.
The authors write in their paper: “This finding is important as it offers people a greater number of exercise options for reducing blood pressure.”
A new study from the Asklepieion General Hospital in Voula, Greece, suggests that having a midday nap is not only good for boosting your energy but also can lower high blood pressure.
For the study, the researchers examined 212 people with the mean blood pressure of 129.9 mm Hg. The participants’ average age was 62 years. During the study, the analysis showed that people who took a midday nap experienced 5.3 mm Hg drop in systolic blood pressure.
One of the study researchers, Dr. Manolis Kallistratos says: “These findings are important because a drop in blood pressure as small as 2 mm Hg can reduce the risk of cardiovascular events, such as heart attack by up to 10 percent.”
Researchers from European institutions and those from the U.S., including the London School of Economics and Political Science in the United Kingdom, and the Stanford University School of Medicine in California, suggest that systematic exercise helps decrease systolic blood pressure, which measures the blood pressure in the blood vessels as the heart beats.
For the study, they analyzed the data from 194 clinical trials that focused on antihypertensive drugs and their impact on systolic blood pressure, and 197 clinical trials, examining the effect of systematic exercise on blood pressure measurements. These trials provided information from 39,742 participants in total.
Dr. Huseyin Naci, one of the lead researchers, explains: “We don’t think, on the basis of our study, that patients should stop taking their antihypertensive medications. But we hope that our findings will inform evidence-based discussions between clinicians and their patients.”
A new study, recently published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology, suggests that exposure to blue light may help reduce high blood pressure.
For the study, a team of researchers assessed whether blue light exposure could produce enough nitric oxide to significantly reduce high blood pressure. They involved 14 male participants aged between 30 and 60 years without a previous diagnosis of cardiovascular conditions.
The authors of the study come into a conclusion: “Our present study demonstrates for the first time that whole-body blue light exposure at doses that are comparable to daily sunlight exposure decreases systolic blood pressure […] in young, healthy male volunteers.”
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