To get the best out of your daily blood pressure medication, take it before you go to bed, researchers say.
This is simple advice that can save lives, say the European Heart Journal.
The pills offer more protection against heart attacks and strokes when taken at bedtime rather than in the morning, a major new study suggests.
Experts believe that the biological "clock" or the natural 24-hour rhythm of our body alters our response to drugs.
Synchronize Pills with Your Body Clock
There is widespread evidence that many different drugs, including heart pills, can
be the largest test to date for the phenomenon of high blood pressure pills and includes more than 1
In a Spanish study:
- Patients were divided into two groups at random – one group taking the pills in the morning and the other taking them at bedtime.
- The researchers observed what happened to patients for the next five or more years  Patients who took their medicines in the evening had almost half the risk of death or heart attack, stroke or heart failure.
Blood pressure should naturally decrease at night, rest and sleep.
If that doesn't happen and remains high, it puts you at increased risk for heart attacks and strokes, experts say.
The study suggests that taking medicines in the evening helps monitor blood pressure at night in patients diagnosed with high blood pressure (what doctors call hypertension).
Patients in the study who took their medicines at bedtime had significantly lower mean blood pressure both at night and during the day, and their blood pressure decreased more at night compared to patients taking their medicines every morning .
Leading researcher Prof. Ramon Hermida, from the University of Vigo, said doctors may want to consider recommending it to patients: "It's completely free, it can save many lives.
" do not recommend a preferred treatment time for hypertension. Morning ingestion is the most common recommendation of doctors based on the misleading goal of reducing morning blood pressure levels.
"The results of this study show that patients who routinely take their antihypertensive medications before bedtime, as opposed to waking up, have better controlled blood pressure and most importantly, a significantly reduced risk of death or heart disease. and blood vessels. "
He said more research was needed in different populations to see if the results would be applied to all patients on different brands of blood pressure pills.
Vanessa Smith, of the British Foundation says, "Although this study supports previous findings in the field, more research will be needed among other ethnic groups and shift workers to prove whether blood pressure medicines take the night off cardiovascular health.
"If you are currently taking blood pressure medication, it is important that you consult your doctor or pharmacist before changing the time you are taking it. There may be specific reasons why your doctor has prescribed medicines in the morning or at night. "
Lifestyle factors also change blood pressure, so avoid:
- Drinking too much alcohol
- Being overweight
- Not doing enough exercise
- Eating too much salt