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Dietary influence on systolic and diastolic blood pressure in the TwinsUK cohort

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages13
Published17 Jul 2020


  • nutrients_manuscript_8_7_20

    nutrients_manuscript_8_7_20.docx, 1 MB, application/vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.wordprocessingml.document

    Uploaded date:15 Jul 2020

    Version:Accepted author manuscript

King's Authors


Background: Nutrition plays a key role in blood pressure (BP) regulation. Here we examine associations between nutrient intakes and BP in a large predominantly female population-based cohort.
Methods: We assessed the correlation between 45 nutrients (from food frequency questionnaires) and systolic BP/diastolic BP (SBP/DBP) in 3,889 individuals from TwinsUK not on hypertensive treatments and replicated in an independent subset of monozygotic twins discordant for nutrient intake (17-242 pairs). Results from both analyses were meta-analysed. For significant nutrients, we calculated heritability using structural equation modelling.
Results: We identified and replicated 15 nutrients associated with SBP, 9 also associated with DBP, adjusting for covariates and multiple testing. 14 of those had a heritable component (h2: 27.1% - 57.6%). The strongest association with SBP were with riboflavin (Beta(SE)=-1.49(0.38),P=1.00x10-4) and tryptophan (-.31(0.01),P=5.x10-4); while for DBP with alcohol (0.05(0.07),P=1.00 x10-4) and lactose (-0.05(0.0),P=1.3x10-3). Two multivariable nutrient scores, combining independently SBP/DBP-associated nutrients explained 22% of the variance in SBP and 13.6% of the variance in DBP. Moreover, bivariate heritability analysis suggested that nutrients and BP share some genetic influences.
Conclusions: We confirm current understanding and extend the panel of dietary nutrients implicated in BP regulation underscoring the value of nutrient focused dietary research in preventing and managing hypertension.

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