Trips to the toilet at night are a sign of high blood pressure

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Trips to the toilet at night are a sign of high blood pressure, according to results from the Watari study presented today at the 83rd Annual Scientific Meeting of the Japanese Circulation Society (JCS 2019).

"Our study indicates that if you need to urinate in the night—called nocturia—you may have elevated and/or excess fluid in your body," said study author Dr. Satoshi Konno, of the Division of Hypertension, Tohoku Rosai Hospital, Sendai, Japan. "If you continue to have nocturia, ask your doctor to check your pressure and ."

JCS 2019 takes place from 29 to 31 March in Yokohama. Joint scientific sessions are being held by the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) and JCS as part of the ESC Global Activities programme.

Previous research from Japan has reported that high intake is associated with nocturia. Compared to , people in Japan eat more salt and are more likely to be "salt sensitive", meaning that their blood pressure rises more when salt is consumed. Taken together, these two factors mean that people in Japan are at greater risk of developing .

This study examined the link between nocturia and hypertension in the general Japanese population. The study enrolled 3,749 residents of Watari who had an annual health check in 2017. Blood pressure was measured and information on nocturia was obtained by questionnaire. Participants with blood pressure 140/90 mmHg or higher or prescribed antihypertensive drugs were considered hypertensive.

Nocturia (one or more nocturia events per night) was significantly associated with hypertension after controlling for possible confounders (odds ratio 1.4; p<0.01). The risk of hypertension rose significantly as the number of nocturia events per night increased (p for trend <0.01).

"We found that getting up in the night to urinate was linked to a 40% greater chance of having hypertension," said Dr. Konno. "And the more visits to the toilet, the greater the risk of hypertension."

Of the 1,882 participants who answered the questionnaire, 1,295 (69%) had nocturia. Dr. Konno said the results do not prove a causal relationship between nocturia and hypertension and may not apply to populations outside Japan. He said: "The relationship may be influenced by various factors including lifestyle, salt intake, ethnicity, and genetic background."

Dr. Mutsuo Harada, press coordinator for JCS 2019, said: "Hypertension is a national disease in Japan. The average salt intake in Japan is approximately 10 g/day, which is more than double the average salt intake worldwide (4 g/day). This excessive salt intake is related to our preference for seafood and soy sauce-based food, so salt restriction is difficult to carry out. Early detection and management of hypertension are very important to prevent cardiovascular diseases. We should keep in mind that nocturia is not only caused by urinary organ problems but also by systemic diseases such as hypertension."

ESC President Professor Barbara Casadei said: "More than one billion people have high blood pressure worldwide. High blood is the leading global cause of premature death, accounting for almost ten million deaths in 2015. ESC guidelines recommend medication to reduce the risk of stroke and heart disease.3 A healthy lifestyle is also advised, including salt restriction, alcohol moderation, healthy eating, regular exercise, weight control, and smoking cessation."


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More information: Tomohiro Matsuo et al. Daily salt intake is an independent risk factor for pollakiuria and nocturia, International Journal of Urology (2017). DOI: 10.1111/iju.13321

Bryan Williams et al. 2018 ESC/ESH Guidelines for the management of arterial hypertension, European Heart Journal (2018). DOI: 10.1093/eurheartj/ehy339

Journal information: European Heart Journal

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mqr
Mar 30, 2019
Depression causes frequent urination at night. Or PTSD, or any situation that includes changes in mood, general well being. If a person takes substances that improve mood, they likely stop urinating at night.

Mar 30, 2019
Perhaps the salt is causing people to drink more water before they go to bed. Some studies have indicated that salt intake is not necessarily detrimental if it is accompanied by adequate potassium. I have noticed a benefit from taking a potassium supplement after I eat a meal that has a lot of salt. It seems peculiar that in Japan they consider 140/90 to be high blood pressure when in the US they consider anything over 120/80 to be elevated or high blood pressure.

Apr 02, 2019
I would use low-sodium salt that has both potassium chloride and sodium chloride. This way you will always be sure to get potassium too no matter how much salt you eat.

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