NYTimes: chronic htn

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NYTimes: chronic htn

Postby caryn » Sat Mar 29, 2008 03:17 am

As many as half of the 70 million people in the United States with hypertension turn out to be sensitive to salt, versus 10 percent of Americans in general. Even so, only 22 percent of patients stick with a hypertension-taming, low-salt DASH diet rich in fruits, vegetables and low-fat dairy. That’s down from 30 percent in 1994. “We’re going in the wrong direction,” said Dr. Phillip Mellen of the Hattiesburg Health Clinic in Mississippi, who has studied nutritional aspects of high blood pressure.

Yet in knocking out one dietary demon, a much larger piece of the lifestyle puzzle still needs to be addressed. Rising rates of obesity, diets shockingly low in fruits and vegetables, and a lack of exercise are all major reasons one in three Americans now suffers from hypertension, experts say.

The sobering results come as pharmaceutical companies appear stalled in creating demonstrably superior new drugs to treat high blood pressure...


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