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Tag: weight loss

Lowering Blood Pressure Without Medication

Recently updated guidelines from the American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology have contributed to a growing number of patients being diagnosed with hypertension. Lowering the threshold for hypertension from 140/90 to 130/80 mm Hg resulted in a significant increase of patients  — with previously normal or slightly elevated blood pressure (BP) — who now rank in the hypertension stage 1 category. Although the revisions were made with the intention of encouraging early preventative action and lifestyle interventions, they have also prompted a rise in patients who qualify for antihypertensive medications. 

In certain cases, blood pressure medication is necessary for hypertension treatment and ensuring adequate cardiometabolic care. A multitude of different antihypertensive drugs are available for patient use, including beta blockers, ACE inhibitors, diuretics, and calcium-channel blockers, which are often used in tandem. Although, these medications are often associated with adverse effects, such as gastrointestinal problems, dizziness, weakness, headache, and many other undesirable symptoms. 

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Weight Loss Counseling? Not So Much.

Adults who are overweight or obese report receiving little weight loss counseling, especially involving medications and surgery; however, many report trying to lose weight within the last 12 months, according to a speaker at ObesityWeek.

“We know that less than 50% of patients with obesity have reported receiving weight loss counseling within a provider visit and most providers, primary care providers, provide no counseling at all,” Sean J. Iwamoto, MD, a postdoctoral fellow in the division of endocrinology, metabolism & diabetes at the University of Colorado School of Medicine, Anschutz Medical Campus, said during his presentation. “At baseline it seems that primary care providers seem to overvalue exercise, meaning they find its more comfortable to discuss exercise with their patients, as well as they feel it’s the most effective way to lose weight, and they undervalue other things like weight loss medications. We also know that obesity medications are effective but prescription rates are low.”

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