Young people who have elevated blood pressure and a lower Body Mass Index (BMI) may have an increased risk of new-onset type 2 diabetes, a new analysis suggests.
This research was published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, and involved an analysis of 4.1 million adults in the United Kingdom.
This was conducted by researchers at the George Institute for Global Health, University of Oxford. The team analysed this cohort of adults, whom were aged between 30 and 90, through electronic health records in the U.K. Clinical Practice Research Database.
The adults had their blood pressure taken from January 1990 to January 2013 and had no pre-existing cardiovascular disease or diabetes. Their blood pressure was considered “usual” at the beginning of the study.
Elevated blood pressure (20-mm Hg higher systolic BP and 10-mm Hg higher diastolic BP) were associated with a greater risk of new-onset type 2 diabetes. However, the strength of this association declined with increasing BMI and age.
Study author Connor A. Emdi, HBSc, George Institute for Global Health, said: “A detailed understanding of BP as a potential risk factor for diabetes will help us better understand and communicate risks with patients and can lead to more targeted prevention and management.
“In addition to confirming the overall effects from previous reports, our study’s large sample size extends previous reports by investigating the differences in associations by key populations, such as age, sex and BMI.”
However, the researchers stressed that “it is unclear whether the observed association between BP and diabetes is causal,” and further research is necessary to determine if this observed risk can be modified.

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