Poster Topical Area: Medical Nutrition

Location: Hall D

Poster Board Number: 646

P14-021 - Effectiveness of NEWSTART lifestyle program to reverse hypertension

Monday, Jun 11
8:00 AM – 3:00 PM

Hypertension is the most common clinical condition in primary care within the U.S. whose primary treatment is antihypertensive medications. A systolic blood pressure (SBP) of <120 mmHg can be achieved with intensive medications along with increased incidence of serious side-effects. Thus, some consumers prefer lifestyle approaches to reduce hypertension. Lifestyle interventions targeting multiple lifestyle factors at one time appear to be more effective than those targeting a single factor. The purpose of this study was to assess the effectiveness of the NEWSTART Lifestyle program to reduce SBP. The NEWSTART Lifestyle targets multiple factors to reduce hypertension including: nutrition (vegan diet), exercise, water, temperance, fresh air, rest, and trust in divine power. We evaluated retrospective data from a pretest-posttest intervention of 117 hypertensive subjects who were drawn from 173 consecutive clients that participated in the NEWSTART program for a 16-day period during 2014. The baseline age and BMI of the subjects (Mean±SD) were 66.5±11.4 years, and 31.6±6.6 kg/m2 respectively. Compared to baseline SBP (138±21 mmHg), SBP was significantly reduced by day 16 (119±28 mmHg) (p. <0.001); a drop of -19 mmHg or -14%. Half of the subjects achieved a desirable blood pressure of <120 mmHg. This reduction of systolic blood pressure was consistent in all subjects irrespective of gender, body weight, use/not use of antihypertensive medications, and presence/absence of diabetes or dyslipidemias such as hypercholesterolemia, hypertriglyceridemia, or low HDL cholesterol. The intake of antihypertensive medications was also significantly decreased. The NEWSTART Lifestyle program was effective in achieving a significant reduction in systolic blood pressure. This lifestyle intervention should be retested with a larger population for a longer period of time to assess its long-term effectiveness, clinical significance, and relevance to plant-based nutrition research.

Funding Source: Nonfunded research

CoAuthors: Albert Sanchez, Research Director – Weimar Institute; S. Christine Chung – Andrews University; Gerald Shavlik – Weimar Institute; Francisco Ramirez – Weimar Institute; Randall Bivens – Weimar Institute; Sherine Brown-Fraser – Andrews University; Roger Gallant – Weimar Institute

Maximino ALFREDO.. Mejia

Associate Professor
Andrews University
Berrien Springs, Michigan