Blue light has been found to be able to safely lower blood pressure without many of the serious side effects experienced by people taking blood pressure lowering drugs. This could be a non-invasive and non-pharmacological way to safely treat high blood pressure. The study was published by researchers at the University of Surrey in the UK and Heinrich Heine University in Düsseldorf, Germany, November 1, 2018 in the EAPC European Association of Preventive Cardiology. The research was carried out together with Philips, the manufacturer of many of the blue light instruments.
Results of the Study Showed that Blue Light may Prevent Cardiovascular Events
The researchers tested blue light therapy on a group of participants for 30 minutes of whole-body blue light at about 450 nanometers, which is similar to normal sunshine.
High blood pressure was reduced by almost 8mmHg, which is similar to the effects of blood pressure lowering drugs. Besides lowering blood pressure, the blue light treatment also reduced stiffness of arteries and relaxed blood vessels, which led to increased blood flow. Another result from the blue light treatment was an increase in levels of nitric oxide which is protective of the cardiovascular system.
Previous Research Ultraviolet (UV) Light
Previous research showed similar effects from ultraviolet (UV) light, but ultraviolet light, like the sun, raises a risk for cancer.
Cardiovascular Disease (CVD)
Cardiovascular disease, which leads to cardiovascular events like heart attacks and strokes, is the leading cause of death for Americans. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) one in every three Americans dies of a heart attack or a stroke. Stroke is also a leading cause of disability among many of the six million stroke survivors in the United States. Many of these post-stroke people have speech, cognitive and movement impairments. They also suffer from great psychological and financial stress. According to the World Stroke Organization, the total worldwide cost for circulatory diseases that include stroke, heart disease, kidney disease and diabetes is around 957 billion US dollars.
High Blood Pressure is the Main Risk Factor for Heart Attacks and Strokes
High blood pressure is the main risk factor for cardiovascular events like heart attacks and strokes. Many of these cardiovascular events and deaths could have been prevented had people been able to get their high blood pressure under control. In fact, the CDC claims that 80% of deaths from strokes are preventable. Also, while about 70% of Americans have high blood pressure, only about half have it under control. High blood pressure is labelled a “silent disease” since it does not produce noticeable symptoms. The result of this is that many people do not even know that they have high blood pressure unless it is discovered by a routine blood pressure check at a visit to their doctor. Unfortunately, it may only be discovered after someone has suffered a heart attack or stroke.
Some People Stop Taking Blood Pressure Lowering Drugs because of Side-effects
Some people stop taking their blood pressure lowering medicine because they sometimes suffer from very unpleasant or dangerous side effects. Thus, a safer non-invasive way to treat high blood pressure without side effects like the blue light could lead to saving millions of lives.
Rehabilitation after Cardiovascular Events
If you or your loved one are in need of a rehab for expert post-stroke or surgery care, or cardiac rehabilitation, the Park Crescent Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center in East Orange, New Jersey is well-known for its outstanding care at the hands of a warm and caring staff.
High blood pressure is such a high risk factor for getting a stroke or heart attack, that everything must be done to get it under control. Since many people cannot take blood pressure lowering drugs because of unpleasant or even dangerous side effects, blue light is a safe non-invasive way of preventing blood pressure and has not shown to have any long-term dangerous side effects