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Lifestyle affects your genes

If you have high blood pressure, this study gives you a reason to blame it on your genes. Well, just a little bit! :)

Genes may explain why some people are more susceptible to the negative effects of a poor diet and lack of exercise on their blood pressure, than others.

The study shows how lifestyle and genes interacts to influence blood pressure.

Genes magnify the negative effects

Researchers analyzed genetic and medical information of 3,665 people aged 14 to 93 years. They looked at how inherited genes influenced high blood pressure risk. They compared people with a range of lifestyles who lead healthy and not so healthy lives.

The results showed that 15% of the difference in diastolic blood pressure (the bottom number) was due to genes. They also found an interaction between genes and 3 lifestyle factors on blood pressure. They were:

  • Smoking cigarettes.
  • Drinking alcohol.
  • Being physically inactive.

Genes affect whether you are susceptible to having high blood pressure, but your lifestyle can influence whether you put yourself at greater risk.

If you have a family history of high blood pressure, it may be best to avoid the 3 lifestyle negative influences on blood pressure of smoking cigarettes, drinking too much alcohol and not doing enough exercises.

What the researchers said …

Lead researcher Franceschini said, “So your level of blood pressure is influenced by your genes, whether you are a smoker or not, are physically active or not, or drink alcohol or not.But those habits can still influence a person’s susceptibility to the disease.”

The next challenge is for the researchers to identify the individual genes that interact with the 3 lifestyle factors to increase the risk of high blood pressure. The study was published in the journal Circulation: Cardiovascular Genetics.

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About Kellie

Kellie is 37 years old and together with her brother Steve makes up the My Health Software team.

She helps on the websites and gathering news for the programs. Kellie worked in the medical industry prior to having her two children (8 and 6) and has a strong interest in self awareness and management of health conditions.


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