Have you ever heard of blood pressure? It’s the force that your blood applies on the walls of your arteries when it moves around your body.
It’s like the speed of your blood. If it moves too fast (which means your blood pressure is too high), it can hurt your heart and lead to health issues. Some scientists have discovered something interesting about this.
Fluctuating Blood Pressure Readings and Heart Disease Risk
These scientists found out that if a young person’s blood pressure readings change a lot over time, they might have a higher chance of developing heart disease when they grow older.
This is interesting because usually, doctors take a bunch of blood pressure readings and average them to see if a patient needs medicine.
But this study suggests that big swings in blood pressure could be an early warning sign that isn’t spotted when only looking at the average.
The Study: Tracking Blood Pressure over 30 Years
The scientists got their data from a study that had been going on for 30 years. This study involved a lot of young people.
Almost half of the people were African American and over half were women. Their blood pressure was checked regularly over 10 years, and then the scientists tracked them for another 20 years.
The scientists paid special attention to something called systolic blood pressure. That’s the first, or top, number you see in a blood pressure reading.
It shows how hard your blood is pushing against the walls of your arteries when your heart beats. If this number is over 130, it means your blood pressure is too high, which can increase your risk for heart disease.
What the Study Found: The Link Between Changing Blood Pressure and Heart Problems
Over the 20 years, some of the study participants died, and some developed heart problems. These problems included heart disease, hospitalization for heart failure, stroke, and procedures to unblock arteries.
The scientists discovered that even a small increase in systolic blood pressure in young adults was tied to a 15% higher risk of heart problems.
This was true even if the average blood pressure was normal and even if there was only one high blood pressure reading in midlife.
The Implications: Time to Pay Attention to Changing Blood Pressure Readings
This study suggests that it’s not just the speed of your blood that matters. The changes in speed (or blood pressure) also matter.
Right now, the guidelines that doctors use to define high blood pressure and decide who needs medicine don’t consider these changes.
So, this study is saying that doctors and patients should watch for changes in blood pressure in early adulthood. This is a time when people can make lifestyle changes to improve their health and maybe live longer.
This study was funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and was published in a medical journal called JAMA Cardiology.
More Interesting Findings About Blood Pressure
If you want to learn more about blood pressure, there are other studies you might want to read.
For example, one study found that using cannabis is linked to a three times higher risk of death in people with high blood pressure. Another found that drinking beetroot juice could help lower high blood pressure.
This new finding about changing blood pressure readings is just one piece of the puzzle. It’s a step forward in understanding how to protect our hearts and live healthier lives. Keep your eyes open for more updates on this topic!
If you care about high blood pressure, please read studies about the best time to take high blood pressure drugs, and scientists find new ways to treat high blood pressure.
For more information about health, please see recent studies that Beetroot juice could help lower high blood pressure, and results showing this common plant nutrient could help reduce high blood pressure.
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