Sugar-Sweetened Beverages May Affect Blood Pressure

Study links lower blood pressure with reduced sweet beverage consumption
By Monica Smith
HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, May 24 (HealthDay News) -- Reducing consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) has a significant association with decreased blood pressure, according to research published online May 24 in Circulation.

Liwei Chen, M.D., of the Louisiana State University Health Science Center in New Orleans, and colleagues analyzed the blood pressure and dietary intake at baseline, six and 18 months of 810 adults participating in an 18-month behavioral intervention trial to determine the relationship between changes in SSB consumption and changes in blood pressure.

The researchers found an SSB intake of 0.9 servings per day and a mean systolic blood pressure/diastolic blood pressure of 134.9/84.8 mm Hg at baseline. A reduction of one serving of SSB per day was associated with a 1.8-mm Hg reduction in systolic blood pressure and a 1.1-mm Hg reduction in diastolic blood pressure over 18 months. Adjusting for weight change over that period, a reduction in SSB intake was still significantly associated with lowered systolic and diastolic blood pressure.

"Findings from this prospective study suggest a positive association between SSB consumption and blood pressure. These findings warrant future studies, particularly randomized controlled trials, to establish the causal relationship," the authors conclude.

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