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Fitness Linked with Lower Blood Pressure

Being fit reduces the risk of high blood pressure, a large new study finds. The study included more than 57,000 adults who were part of a large, long-term exercise study. Their average age was 53. They were referred by their doctors for a treadmill stress test because they had chest pain or shortness of breath. Researchers looked at the level of fitness for each person, as measured by the treadmill test. About 35,000 people in the group had been diagnosed with high blood pressure. More than 70% of those with low fitness levels had high blood pressure, compared with less than 50% of those with high fitness. After the tests, researchers kept track of people for a median of 4.4 years. More than 8,000 people were diagnosed with high blood pressure during this follow-up period. About 49% of them were in the lowest fitness group. About 21% were in the top fitness group.

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