NDSAIDs And Acetaminophen Associated With High Blood Pressure

Recently I was shocked to hear on the evening news that, as Americans age, most if not all of us are projected to develop high blood pressure. I asked myself how this could be, as high blood pressure is certainly not a normal part of aging.

A large-population study, performed on more than 80,000 women, sheds at least some light on this mystery. The study uncovered that common over-the-counter and prescription pain medications have a strong association with high blood pressure (Arch Intern Med, 2002; 162:2204-2208 “In addition to their antipyretic, anti-inflammatory, and pain-relieving effects, analgesics may interfere with blood pressure regulation”).

Unquestionably, pain is a part of aging in our society and many people take acetaminophen and NSAIDS on a daily basis. Now we know that this type of frequent use is not free of risk.

Although these medications provide quick relief for occasional pain, there are natural approaches that have been proven to work as well or better in the long term without nasty side effects. These include dietary supplements like glucosamine and fish oil, and herbs like Boswellia. Some of these supplements also help lower elevated blood pressure. The nature of the pain should be the determining factor in selecting the most appropriate supplement or mix of supplements.

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