Controlling BP crucial for diabetics

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Middle-aged adults recently diagnosed with diabetes and hypertension have some time to effect lifestyle changes to control their high blood pressure (BP).

If they make such changes within a year, the loss to their life expectancy is only two days. But if they wait 10 years, it cuts down life expectancy by almost five months, according to a new study.

High BP is especially damaging for diabetics, raising their risk of stroke, coronary artery disease, kidney failure, vision loss and amputations.

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`For newly diagnosed patients, this means we have time,` said study author Neda Laiteerapong, instructor of medicine at the University of Chicago.

`Most patients would prefer to control their blood pressure through diet and exercise rather than with medications, and it can take months to learn how to change old habits and master new skills.

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