Weight-reducing diets may be beneficial in hypertension

Clinical question: 
How effective are weight-reducing diets in hypertensive patients?
Bottom line: 
In patients with primary hypertension, weight loss diets reduced body weight and blood pressure. A reduction in body weight of approximately 4kg was necessary to achieve a reduction of approximately 4.5mmHg systolic blood pressure and of approximately 3.2mmHg diastolic blood pressure. No useful information on adverse effects was reported in the relevant trials. Mean treatment duration was 6 to 36 months and there was little or no information about deaths or other long-term complications.
These results are mainly based on 1 large study with about 600 participants that was judged to be of high quality. The magnitude of the effects are uncertain, as a result of the small number of patients and studies that could be included in the analyses.
All major guidelines for antihypertensive therapy recommend weight loss. Dietary interventions that aim to reduce body weight may be a useful intervention to reduce blood pressure and the adverse cardiovascular events associated with hypertension.
Review CD#: 
December, 2011
Authored by: 
Brian R McAvoy