Blood Pressure-Lowering Diet Appears More Effective When Combined With Other Interventions
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Combining an anti-hypertension diet with exercise and weight loss counseling may result in increased reduction in high blood pressure along with other benefits. James A. Blumenthal, Ph.D., of Duke University Medical Center, Durham, N.C., and colleagues studied 144 overweight or obese patients with high blood pressure. For four months, 46 were assigned to follow the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet; 49 followed the diet and added supervised exercise and cognitive-behavioral weight loss therapy; and 49 ate their usual diet.
Blood pressure as measured in the clinic decreased by 16.1/9.9 millimeters of mercury among those in the DASH plus weight management group, 11.2/7.5 millimeters of mercury among those in the DASH alone group and 3.4/3.8 millimeters of mercury in those following their normal diet. Other measures of blood vessel and heart function-including mass of the left ventricle-were also most improved in patients assigned to DASH plus weight management.
"The present findings suggest that the DASH diet, particularly when augmented by exercise and weight loss, can offer considerable benefit to patients with high blood pressure, not only through reductions in blood pressure but through favorable modification of biomarkers of disease risk," the authors conclude.
Arch Intern Med. 2010;170:126-135.
Archives of Internal Medicine
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