Break for BP

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A midday nap may help to lower blood pressure, among hypertensive men and women.

In today’s 24/7/365 society, few of us take time to tend to our health and well-being; a midday nap may seem completely elusive.  Manolis Kallistratos, from Asklepieion Voula General Hospital (Greece), and colleagues assessed the effect of midday sleep on blood pressure among a group of 386 men and women, average age 61.4 years), with arterial hypertension.  The team collected these measurements for all subjects: midday sleep time (in minutes), office blood pressure, 24 hour ambulatory blood pressure, pulse wave velocity, lifestyle habits, body mass index (BMI) and a complete echocardiographic evaluation including left atrial size. After adjusting for confounding factors, the researchers found that midday sleepers had 5% lower average 24 hour ambulatory systolic blood pressure (by 6 mmHg), as compared to patients who did not sleep at all midday. Their average systolic blood pressure readings were 4% lower when they were awake (by 5 mmHg) and 6% lower while they slept at night (by 7 mmHg), as compared to non-midday sleepers.  As well, in midday sleepers pulse wave velocity levels were 11% lower and left atrium diameter was 5% smaller. The lead investigator comments that: “midday naps seem to lower blood pressure levels and may probably also decrease the number of required antihypertensive medications.”

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 GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Researchers at the University of Florida have discovered a correlation between grip strength and diabetes and high blood pressure.
The study has been published online ahead of the print version in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Researchers measured the grip strength in normal-weight but high-fat-ratio adults with no history of cardiovascular disease and compared it to the grip strength of normal weight, normal BMI adults and with diagnosed diabetics. The subjects were then tested for A1c levels.

Findings show those who had undiagnosed diabetes measured with a lower grip strength than did individuals who were not diabetic or did not suffer from hypertension.

The results show the weakened grip condition was shown in subjects who had a body mass index within the normal range, but a high proportion of fat to lean muscle. Those percentages for men were more than 25 percent body fat, and for women 35 percent.

This is a subgroup less likely to be screened for hypertension or diabetes because they aren’t considered overweight or obese by BMI measures alone.

The researchers have concluded grip strength is lower in individuals with diagnosed and undiagnosed diabetes and hypertension, and may be an indicator of these diseases in the undiagnosed.

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