Positive Influence of Religion and Spirituality on Blood Pressure

Armen Hareyan's picture

Low blood pressure and religion

A study of more than five thousand African Americans found that individuals who were involved with or participated in religious activities had significantly lower blood pressure than those who were not, despite being more likely to be classified as hypertensive, having higher levels of body mass index (BMI), and lower levels of medication adherence.


The findings, presented today in New York City at the 21st Annual Scientific Meeting of the American Society of Hypertension (ASH 2006), are from the Jackson Heart Study, the largest exclusively African American study sample ever used to ascertain associations among religion, spirituality and blood pressure.

"Cardiovascular health disparities among African Americans are widely recognized, and hypertension is the most prominent risk factor in the development of cardiovascular disease in African Americans," said study author Sharon Wyatt, RN, PhD, from the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson, Mississippi. "Our findings show that the integration of religion and spirituality

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