Research into the relationship between high blood pressure and the development of diabetes has so far given conflicting results.
Now a study, using data on 4.1 million GP-registered patients in the UK, has shown that blood pressure is independently associated with the risk of newly onset diabetes.
The researchers from the University of Oxford found that every 20mmHg increase in systolic blood pressure was associated with a 58% increase in the risk of the disease, and every 10mmHg increase in diastolic pressure was associated with a 52% increase in risk.
In the Journal of the American College of Cardiology (2015;66(14):1552–1562)
, the authors say that chronic inflammation could mediate the relationship between the two conditions and, if it is indeed causal, strategies to reduce high blood pressure could consequently decrease diabetes incidence.
 Emdin CA, Anderson SG, Woodward M et al. Usual blood pressure and risk of new-onset diabetes. Journal of the American College of Cardiology 2015;66(14):1552–1562. doi:10.1016/j.jacc.2015.07.059.