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Bedtime tablets reduce diabetes risk

Published 28/09/2015 | 02:30

Blood pressure tablets
Blood pressure tablets

Taking blood pressure medications at bedtime, rather than in the morning, halves the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, according to new research.

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The research published in Diabetologia (the journal of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes) involved 2,012 patients without diabetes, 976 men and 1,036 women with a mean age of 53 years.

Patients were randomised to take their prescribed blood pressure medications on wakening or the entire daily dose of one or more of them at bedtime.

Investigators who did not know which patients were in which group assessed the development of new-onset diabetes.

During six years, 171 participants developed type 2 diabetes. In the bedtime-treated group, there was a lower-prevalence of a phenomenon known as 'non-dipping' - in which patients' nighttime blood pressure falls by less than 10pc compared to daytime blood pressure.

Non-dipping occurred in 32pc of bedtime-treated patients and 52pc of those getting their treatment in the morning.

There was also a 57pc decrease in the risk of developing new-onset type 2 diabetes in the bedtime-treated group after adjustment for the potential confounders that could skew the results.

Further analysis showed that greater reduction in risk of developing diabetes was observed for bedtime compared with awakening treatment with other drugs.

The authors conclude that the before bed regimen of taking blood pressure medications is as safe as taking them in the morning.

"In hypertensive patients without diabetes, ingestion of the entire daily dose of one or more blood pressure-lowering medications at bedtime compared with ingestion of all such medications upon awakening results in significantly improved sleeping blood pressure control and prevention of new-onset diabetes."

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