About 50 million Americans have high blood pressure (hypertension), yet it can be easily treated with a combination of a low fat diet, weight loss and exercise, rather than drugs, researchers have discovered.
A four year regimen can produce a "significant" reduction in blood pressure, and this was achieved with an average weight loss of just 7.9 lbs (3.6 kg), one glass of alcohol less a week, and the introduction of a diet low in cholesterol and fats.
Researchers from the University of Minnesota studied 902 men and women, aged between 45 and 69, suffering from mild (stage 1) hypertension. Each was given one of six drug treatments as well.
All showed tremendous improvements, including those taking a placebo, which indicates that the major factor was the diet and exercise programme.
See WDDTY 5.11 for our special report on hypertension.
!AJAMA, May 22, 1996.