How can you beat hard-to-control hypertension?

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How can you beat hard-to-control hypertension?

According to the American Heart Association, high blood pressure, or hypertension accounts for more heart disease and stroke deaths than almost all other preventable causes together. It’s second only to smoking. Popping a pill or two to control that hypertension is common, but is that enough?

The answer is likely no for more than one-third of the adults in the U.S. currently taking at least three blood pressure medications but whose blood pressure is uncontrolled – which is also called “resistant hypertension.”

But there is something people with stubbornly high blood pressure can do – and it’s more than just pop another pill.

In what the authors are calling the first study of its kind, people were able to reduce resistant high blood pressure with a supervised combination of diet, exercise, and reduced salt intake.

Over a four-month period, 90 adults with uncontrolled high blood pressure were given weekly dietary advice on how to follow the DASH diet, which stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension.

An award-winning eating plan, DASH has a simple premise: Eat more veggies, fruits, and low-fat dairy foods; limit foods high in saturated fat, and limit your intake of salt.

In addition to the coaching and meal plan, the people in the study engaged in supervised exercise training at a cardiac rehabilitation facility three times a week.

The study participants successfully

  • lost weight,
  • increased their physical activity, and
  • lowered their blood pressure.

One of the study authors said,

“While some people can make lifestyle changes on their own, a structured program of supervised exercise and dietary modifications conducted by a multidisciplinary team of health care professionals in cardiac rehabilitation programs is likely more effective.”

James A. Blumenthal, Ph.D., first and senior author of the study, and J.P. Gibbons Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Duke University School of Medicine in Durham, North Carolina

More details are available at

© Copyright WLL, INC. 2021. This blog provides a wide variety of general health information only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment from your regular physician. If you are concerned about your health, take what you learn from this blog and meet with your personal doctor to discuss your concerns.

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