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Do Hypertensive Individuals Who Are Aware of Their Disease Follow Lifestyle Recommendations Better than Those Who Are Not Aware?
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  • Alternative Title:
    PLoS One
  • Description:
    Lifestyle modification is the first step in hypertension management. Our objective was to assess adherence to lifestyle recommendations by individuals who were aware of their hypertension and to identify characteristics associated with non-adherence. Using data from the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey conducted in 2010-2012, we compared the adherence to six lifestyle recommendations of hypertensive subjects aware of the status of their condition with that of those who were not aware, based on survey regression analysis. The characteristics associated with non-adherence were assessed by multiple logistic regression analysis. Of all hypertensive subjects, <20% adhered to a healthy diet and reduced salt intake and about 80% moderated alcohol consumption and did not smoke. Half of all subjects maintained normal body weight and engaged in physical activity. Most lifestyle features of aware hypertensive Koreans did not differ greatly from those of hypertensive individuals who were not aware. Reduction in salt intake was slightly more prevalent among those aware of their hypertensive status. Obesity was more prevalent among the aware hypertensive subjects, and the prevalence of obesity increased with the duration of hypertension. Male gender, younger age, residence in a rural area, low income, and the use of antihypertensive medication were associated with non-adherence to lifestyle recommendations by hypertensive individuals. Many hypertensive Koreans do not comply with lifestyle recommendations for the management of hypertension. The association between the use of antihypertensive medications and non-adherence suggested an over-reliance on medication rather than a commitment to a healthy lifestyle. Our study highlights that efforts encouraging healthy lifestyles, as the first step in hypertension management, need to be increased.
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