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1. The effects of weight reduction and metoprolol (100 mg, b.d.) in the treatment of hypertension (diastolic blood pressure 90–109 mmHg) in 56 young, overweight patients were investigated in a randomized placebo controlled trial. After a 4‐week baseline, subjects were followed up for 21 weeks. 2. In the weight reduction group, the fall in systolic and diastolic blood pressure (13/10 mmHg), associated with a mean group weight loss of 7.4 kg, was greater (P<0.001) than that in the placebo group (7/3 mmHg); the fall in diastolic pressure but not systolic pressure was also greater than that in the metoprolol group (10/6 mmHg). At the end of follow‐up, 50% of the weight reduction group, 39% of the metoprolol group and 17% of the placebo group had a diastolic blood pressure of less than 90 mmHg. 3. In the weight reduction group there was a fall in total cholesterol and the ratio of total to HDL‐cholesterol (P<0.001); in the metoprolol group there was a fall in HDL‐cholesterol and an increase in the ratio of total to HDL‐cholesterol (P<0.001). 4. It was concluded that a vegetarian diet may have an adjunctive role in control of mild hypertension, but that in view of likely problems with acceptability those dietary components responsible for the blood pressure differences need to be identified. Copyright © 1985, Wiley Blackwell. All rights reserved

Original publication




Journal article


Clinical and Experimental Pharmacology and Physiology

Publication Date





267 - 271