Patients who take their blood pressure medications at bedtime may wake up with a lower risk of diabetes.
Two new studies from Spain found that patients with hypertension (high blood pressure) who take their meds in the evening may reduce their blood pressure while they sleep and significantly lower their risk of type 2 diabetes.
"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," wrote lead study author Ramn C. Hermida, PhD, a cardiologist and epidemiologist at the University of Vigo, and colleagues.
Type 2 diabetes is a chronic condition that affects the way the body processes blood sugar. This condition is linked to an increased risk of heart disease, among other health problems.
For this study, Dr. Hermida and team looked at more than 2,000 hypertensive men and women with an average age of 53. None of these patients had type 2 diabetes at the study's start.
These patients were divided into two groups. Patients in the first group took all of their blood pressure meds when they woke up. Patients in the second group took one or more of their meds at bedtime.
They were then followed for six years. During that time, 171 patients developed type 2 diabetes.
Patients in the bedtime group had significantly lower blood pressure during sleep on average compared to the morning group. The bedtime group also had a 57 percent lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes than the morning group during the study period.
Patients should consult their doctors before making any changes to their medication routines.
These studies were published Sept. 23 in the journal Diabetologia.
The Spanish government and the University of Vigo funded this research. No conflicts of interest were disclosed.