Effect of a Modest Weight Loss in Normalizing Blood Pressure in Obese Subjects on Antihypertensive Drugs

Luisa Gilardini, Gabriella Redaelli, Marina Croci, Antonio Conti, Lucia Pasqualinotto, Cecilia Invitti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: To assess the effect of a lifestyle intervention in lowering/normalizing blood pressure (BP) levels in hypertensive (controlled or not) obese patients. Methods: In this prospective observational study, 490 obese hypertensive patients, 389 controlled (BP <140/90 mm Hg; CH) and 101 uncontrolled (BP ≥ 140/90 mm Hg; UH) attended a 3-month lifestyle intervention. Before and after the intervention we assessed weight, waist circumference, fat mass, BP, metabolic and renal variables, and physical activity. A multivariate regression model was used to determine the predictors of BP changes. Results: 18.9% of CH and 20.0% of UH were on ≥ 3 antihypertensive drugs. Weight change (average -4.9 ± 2.7%) was independent of the antihypertensive drugs employed. Systolic BP (SBP) decreased by 23 mm Hg and diastolic BP (DBP) by 9 mm Hg, in patients with UH most of whom (89%) normalized BP levels (in 49% after a weight loss <5%). Age, gender, whole and central obesity, concomitance of type 2 diabetes, chronic renal disease, physical activity intensification, and pharmacological therapy did not affect BP lowering. In the regression analysis with SBP change as dependent variable, weight reduction (β = 0.523, p = 0.005) and group (UH vs. CH, β = -19.40, p = 0.0005) remained associated with SBP reduction. When DBP change was entered as dependent variable, baseline uric acid remained associated with DBP reduction (β = 0.824, p <0.05). Conclusion: Lifestyle interventions are useful for all obese hypertensive patients in most of whom a modest weight loss is sufficient to normalize BP levels avoiding the aggressive use of multiple antihypertensive drugs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)251-258
Number of pages8
JournalObesity Facts
Publication statusAccepted/In press - Jul 26 2016


  • Hypertension
  • Lifestyle intervention
  • Obesity
  • Weight loss

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology (medical)
  • Health(social science)


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