Parents may have lower blood pressure readings than childless adults

USA Today (1/14, Jayson) reported that, according to a study published Jan. 14 in the Annals of Behavioral Medicine, “parents have better blood pressure readings than childless adults.” Researchers arrived at that conclusion after monitoring “the blood pressure of 198 adults, ages 20-68,” who “wore portable monitors” taking “random readings three times an hour” around the clock. In addition, investigators “compared parents with kids under age two to parents with teens to parents with kids over 18 and found no differences.”
“For parents overall, the 24-hour blood pressure readings averaged 116/71 — which put them 4.5 points lower than nonparents in systolic blood pressure (the first number) and three points lower than nonparents in diastolic blood pressure,” Utah’s Deseret Morning News (1/15, Moore) reports. “The effect was dramatic among women in particular, with motherhood corresponding to a 12-point difference in systolic blood pressure and a seven-point difference in diastolic blood pressure.” The Los Angeles Times “Booster Shots” blog also covered the story.

As a father of two, I would have bet the farm that the opposite was true!

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