Harvard Heart Letter

Blood pressure drugs can boost blood sugar

Depending on the drug, though, it may not matter.

People with high blood pressure can turn to several types of medication when diet and exercise aren't enough to rein in their hypertension (see "So many choices"). Each of them does the job. Yet each has its own quirks and costs.

Common side effects range from frequent urination with diuretics to fatigue with beta blockers or a chronic dry cough with ACE inhibitors. While most of the side effects are aggravating or irritating, one that could pose long-term health problems is an increase in blood sugar.

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