My Health Software, Newsletters » My Blood Pressure Newsletter, Issue #11
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Newsletter Issue: 11 — Date: 26th March 2006 — Web Site:

Welcome to the My Blood Pressure newsletter!

In this issue we have a selection of blood pressure news, and a personal account of how home monitoring helped Ron Sisco and his doctors, detect and fix a medication problem. Thank you to Ron for sharing this story!

Blood Pressure News Roundup

A selection of breaking news stories relating to blood pressure. Clicking on the links will take you to a page on our website which contains a summary of the story, and links to other sources.

An interesting mix of stories made the news this month.

One that caught my eye reported on a study that rice bran lowers blood pressure in rats. Rats with hypertension! I did some research into this, and found that a rat’s blood pressure averages around 100/75. I know a few people who would like that reading, however the pulse rate would be a bit of a worry … around 400 bpm!

Enjoy the blood pressure news!

Contributed by: Kellie

Drugs delay – not stop hypertension
Researchers at the University of Michigan Medical School temporarily gave blood pressure medication to “pre-hypertensive” patients in order to prevent hypertension developing. Patients who took blood pressure drugs in the pre-hypertensive stage for 2 years delayed developing hypertension by only 1 year. It is estimated about 70 million Americans have pre-hypertension – blood pressure readings in the 120 over 80 up to 139 over 89 range. The study, released at the American College of Cardiology meeting was an effort to find an effective drug intervention for hypertension. The most effective long term prevention of hypertension remains diet and lifestyle changes. (Full story)

Fiber rich diet improves blood pressure levels
The March edition of the Journal of Hypertension includes new research which shows a diet high in fiber can reduce high blood pressure. Researchers at the Tulane University School of Medicine, New Orleans studied data from 1,477 adults eating 7.2 to 18.9 grams of fiber daily for 8 weeks. Patients following the diet had a reduction in both systolic and diastolic blood pressure. The researchers recommended people with high blood pressure increase the quantity of fruit and vegetables to increase dietary fiber. The Mayo Clinic website has great information on fiber, including the best food sources. (Full story)

Are saunas good for your heart?
Saunas have been used for thousand of years for relaxation purposes and are increasing in popularity. Recent studies have shown saunas seem to be safe for short periods (15 mins) in patients who have stable coronary heart disease. Once in a sauna a person’s pulse rate can increase to over 30%, increasing blood flow to the skin. Blood pressure levels can be unpredictable, increasing in some and falling in others. All studies consistently recommend that healthy and heart patients avoid alcohol before and after a sauna, and drink plenty of water afterwards. It is recommended that patients with heart disease consult their doctor before having a sauna or hot bath. (Full story)

Blood pressure in rats lowered by rice bran
A recent Japanese study has found rice bran, a waste product of rice processing, decreased blood pressure in rats. Rice bran, a component of brown rice, is discarded as consumers prefer the polished white kernel of rice underneath. Scientists at Tohoku University feed rice bran to hypertensive stroke-prone rats, due to the similarity between human and rat hypertension. The rats systolic blood pressure was lowered by about 20%. Researchers are keen to understand the mechanism by which rice bran lowers blood pressure and duplicate a study with humans. (Full story)

Music reduces blood pressure in nervous patients
A Japanese study has shown listening to music lowered the blood pressure of ‘nervous patients’ during cardiac catheter tests. The study conducted at Iwamizawa Municipal General Hospital in Hokkaido involved nurses taking the patients blood pressure twice before and during catheter insertion. The blood pressure levels of the patients who listened to music decreased by around 44 mm Hg. However, the blood pressure of the patients who didn’t listen to any music increased by an average of 6 mm Hg. The study highlights the benefits that music may have on blood pressure. (Full story)

Alzheimer’s risk may be reduced by blood pressure medication
New research has shown some drugs taken for high blood pressure, especially certain diuretics, may help reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease. The study, published in Archives of Neurology, analyzed data of over 3,300 people in Utah, U.S.A. aged 65 years and over. A type of diuretic, called potassium-sparing diuretic, led to a 70% reduction in the risk of Alzheimer’s disease. Potassium-sparing diuretics prevent the loss of potassium. The researchers concluded that the findings warrant further investigation into the possible beneficial effect that a reduction in potassium has in reducing the risk of Alzheimers. (Full story)

Contributed by: Kellie

My Story

This section contains stories and articles contributed by our users and subscribers. If you have something to contribute, we would love to hear from you. Email Kellie or Steve at with your idea or story!

In this issue, we publish Ron Sisco’s story

My Story – Ron Sisco

Moved to: People who Monitor their Blood Pressure

About us

This newsletter is put together by a brother and sister team.

Steven Alan is 36 and is the programmer of the My Blood Pressure software. Steve was diagnosed with high blood pressure in February 2004. Steve needs to monitor his blood pressure regularly, and will probably need to do so for the rest of his life. Steve’s systolic blood pressure was over 200 at one point, but recently he has got his blood pressure under control, and most readings are below 120/80.

Steve is responsible for contributing news about the software as well as tips and tricks for using the software.

Kellie Helen (Steve’s sister) is 34 and a full time mother to a 5 and 3 year old. In her spare time!, she has started working with Steve on the website and newsletter. Kellie grew up in a household which had its fair share of blood pressure problems! Their father has always had high blood pressure, but somehow Steve got all the high blood pressure genes, while in her teens, Kellie used to suffer from her blood pressure being too low. Kellie worked in the medical and surgical industry before becoming a full time mum, and is looking forward to spending more time on this project as her kids get older.

Kellie is responsible for scouring the net for news stories of interest to people who monitor their blood pressure, and collecting and organizing stories contributed by subscribers.

My Health Software
PO Box 1468
Rozelle 2039

Disclaimer: Nothing contained in this newsletter is intended to be instructional for medical diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your health care provider.


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