Only half of patients with hypertension have this dangerous condition under control. Highlights of 8 new studies, here.
High blood pressure is called the “silent killer” because it often has no warning signs or symptoms.-CDC
Sodium Study Surprise.
Researchers expected dietary sodium intake to be positively associated with both systolic and diastolic blood pressures, but they found the opposite. Long-term data from the Framingham Study provided no support for lowering sodium intakes among healthy adults to below 2.3 g/d as recommended.
Potassium Lowers BP.
Increasing consumption of potassium-rich natural foods reduces blood pressure and cardiovascular and kidney disease. High dietary potassium provokes a decrease in Na+-Clâ cotransporter activity to drive more potassium secretion (and sodium excretion) regardless of whether sodium intake is high or low.
Energy Drinks Boost BP.
Researchers compared the ECG and blood pressure effects of highâvolume energy drink consumption with those of caffeine alone. The corrected QT interval and systolic blood pressure were significantly higher post highâvolume energy drink consumption.
Vitamin D Equals Placebo.
Monthly high-dose vitamin D supplementation does not prevent cardiovascular disease (CVD). The cumulative incidence of CVD for a median follow-up of 3.3 years was 11.8% in patients given 100â¯000 IU of vitamin D3 monthly vs 11.5% for placebo. The primary outcome was incident CVD and death; secondary outcomes included MI, angina, heart failure, and hypertension.
Simultaneous Hypertension/Diabetes Control.
Antihypertensive and hypoglycemic drugs and treatment adherence were analyzed for their association with good control in primary care patients aged â¥ 65 years with a dual diagnosis of hypertension and diabetes. Both were well controlled simultaneously in about one-third of patients. A combination of biguanides and diuretics achieved the best control.
Alternate-Day Fasting Comes Up Empty.
Alternate-day fasting did not produce superior adherence, weight loss, weight maintenance, or cardioprotection vs daily calorie restriction in obese adults. There were no significant differences between intervention groups in blood pressure, heart rate, triglycerides, fasting glucose, fasting insulin, insulin resistance, C-reactive protein, or homocysteine concentrations.
Cognitive Deficiencies Start Early.
High blood pressure, cholesterol, smoking, and other cardiovascular risk factors have long been associated with cognitive deficiencies in adults. But cardiovascular risk factors from childhood and adolescence were found to be associated with worse midlife cognition regardless of adulthood exposure.
Low Adherence to High-Intensity Statins After MI.
Many patients who take high-intensity statins after an MI do not continue to take them with high adherence for 2 years post discharge. Less likely to take high-intensity statins with high adherence were African Americans, Hispanics, and new high-intensity statin users. Patients may benefit from interventions aimed to improve high-intensity statin use.
About 75 million persons in the United States have high blood pressure, says the CDC. Only about half (54%) have it under control, and many do not even know they have it.Several recent studies have added to the understanding of this common and deadly condition. Click on the slides above for the latest findings. Links to original sources, below.Â SourcesSodium Study SurprisePotassium Lowers BPEnergy Drinks Gives BP a BoostVitamin D Equals PlaceboSimultaneous Hypertension/Diabetes ControlAlternate-Day Fasting Comes Up EmptyCognitive Deficiencies Start EarlyLow Adherence to High-Intensity Statins After MIÂ