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Beta Blocker Side Effects

Research shows that some beta blockers and diuretics that are prescribed to control high blood pressure can cause high blood sugar levels, weight gain, tiredness and impotence (American Journal of Hypertension 11: Oct 1998: 1244-1247; 1258-1265).

Many people with high blood pressure have high blood insulin levels that increase their chances of suffering heart attacks as well as causing constant hunger and weight gain. Beta blockers such as atenolol and propranolol, and diuretics such as hydrochlorothiazide, reduce the body's ability to respond to insulin, causing high blood insulin levels that increase risk for heart attacks, diabetes and weight gain. Because of this, drug companies have developed other beta blockers such as dilevalol, carvedilol and celiprolol that do not raise insulin levels and therefore do not increase a person's chances of suffering heart attacks, diabetes and weight gain.

Most other drugs used to treat high blood pressure, such as angiotensin converting enzyme or ACE inhibitors, have no impact on or even improve insulin resistance and help to prevent heart attacks and control diabetes. Most cases of high blood pressure that require medication should be treated with the newer beta blockers or other drugs in place of the older beta blockers and diuretics. Check with your doctor or pharmaccist about the side effects of your medications.
See Exercisers – Know the Side Effects of Your Medications

Checked 4/30/17

May 29th, 2013
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About the Author: Gabe Mirkin, MD

Sports medicine doctor, fitness guru and long-time radio host Gabe Mirkin, M.D., brings you news and tips for your healthful lifestyle. A practicing physician for more than 50 years and a radio talk show host for 25 years, Dr. Mirkin is a graduate of Harvard University and Baylor University College of Medicine. He is board-certified in four specialties: Sports Medicine, Allergy and Immunology, Pediatrics and Pediatric Immunology. The Dr. Mirkin Show, his call-in show on fitness and health, was syndicated in more than 120 cities. Read More
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