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Why people with high blood pressure should have folic acid supplements

The combined use of the hypertension medication enalapril and folic acid, compared with enalapril alone, significantly reduced the risk of first stroke.

A new study has revealed that folic acid supplements can help ward off stroke in people with high blood pressure.

In a study that included more than 20,000 adults in China with high blood pressure but without a history of stroke or heart attack, the combined use of the hypertension medication enalapril and folic acid, compared with enalapril alone, significantly reduced the risk of first stroke.

The authors wrote that this trial (China Stroke Primary Prevention Trial; CSPPT), with data on individual baseline folate levels and MTHFR genotypes, has provided convincing evidence that baseline folate level was an important determinant of efficacy of folic acid therapy in stroke prevention. Read about how you can diagnose high blood pressure.

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The CSPPT was the first large-scale randomized trial to test the hypothesis using individual measures of baseline folate levels. In this population without folic acid fortification, they observed considerable individual variation in plasma folate levels and clearly showed that the beneficial effect appeared to be more pronounced in participants with lower folate levels. Read about how you can diagnose high blood pressure.

The study is published in JAMA.

Image source: Getty Images


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