More Than Salt Sugars May Contribute To High Blood Pressure
New evidence published in the online journal Open Heart suggests that added sugars probably matter more than dietary sodium for risk of hypertension and cardiovascular disease.
Cardiovascular disease is the number one cause of premature mortality in the developed world, and hypertension is its most important risk factor.
Hypertension was implicated as a primary or contributing factor in more than 348,000 deaths in the US in 2009, with costs to the nation in excess of $50 billion annually. Controlling hypertension is a major focus of public health initiatives, and dietary approaches to address hypertension have historically focused on sodium.
Nonetheless, the potential benefits of sodium reduction are debatable studies have shown that the reduction in blood pressure achieved by restricting salt is slim.
Recent data encompassing over 100,000 patients indicates that sodium intake between 3-6 g/day is associated with a lower risk of death and cardiovascular events compared with either a higher or lower level of intake. Thus, guidelines advising restriction of sodium intake below 3 g/day may cause harm, the authors write.
Processed foods happen to be major sources of not just sodium, but also of highly refined carbohydrates: that is, various sugars and the simple starches that give rise to them through digestion. The researchers comment:
Aside From Salt And Sugar What Raises Blood Pressure
In addition to high-salt and high-sugar products, foods that raise blood pressure include those that are high in saturated fat. Foods high in saturated fat can contribute to weight gain and metabolic syndrome while raising your risk of hypertension too.
Not eating enough potassium contributes to high blood pressure. Adequate potassium intake promotes electrolyte balance in the blood and helps counteract the effects of sodium.
Leading a sedentary lifestyle can raise your risk of developing hypertension. Without sufficient activity and exercise, the heart does not grow stronger as a muscle. As a result, the heart must work much harder to pump blood throughout the body, which causes blood flow to exert more pressure on arterial walls.
Can A Person With High Blood Pressure Also End Up With Bouts Of Low Blood Pressure
Dr. Laffin explains that treatment of hypertension can sometimes result in episodes of low blood pressure. In other words, the medication prescribed may lower blood pressure too much. Additionally, certain blood pressure medications have an increased effect if you’re dehydrated, says Dr. Laffin. For example, ARBs and ACE-inhibitors will have more of a blood pressure lowering effect if you’re dehydrated.
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What About The Studies
You would be surprised just how many studies exist that shows no connection to salt and hypertension. So forget the studies. Study it in yourself. If you have hypertension, reduce your salt intake for two weeks and do nothing else . See if that brings down your blood pressure significantly. If not, eliminate all sugar intake in the form of refined sugar and refined carbs for two weeks. See what happens.
Please note there are some medical conditions that are can be exacerbated by increased salt intake such as kidney failure and congestive heart failure. Consult your doctor if you have a serious medical condition.
Can High Blood Sugar Cause Brain Damage
Researchers are finding more evidence linking elevated blood sugar levels with cognitive problems.
Visit your doctor, and no matter what your age, you’ll step on the scale, get your blood pressure checked, and receive a lab slip to test your cholesterol levels. But a test for blood sugar? That’s a toss-up.
Doctors are short on time, patients don’t like being stuck with needles, and the prevailing opinion is that blood sugar isn’t an issue until people reach their golden years. Trouble is, a growing body of research suggests that maintaining appropriate blood sugar levels throughout your life could play a key role in preserving your brain.
Research has shown a link between diabetes and for decades. In fact, a November 2012 review in Experimental Gerontology reported that people with diabetes have double the risk of developing dementia. Now, scientists are discovering that even modestly elevated blood sugar levels may speed up cognitive decline.
“We know that people with diabetes are at increased risk,” says James A. Mortimer, PhD, professor in the department of epidemiology at the University of South Florida and Fellow of the American Academy of Neurology . Even pre-diabetes has shown up in some studies. But this is pre-pre-diabetes, in the 90 to 100 mg/dL range.”
Safeguarding Your Brain
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How Does High Blood Sugar Affect The Body
Monitoring your blood sugar is essential if you have diabetes. Symptoms will get worse if treatment is not provided, and serious health complications can arise as a result. The signs of high blood sugar to look for include fatigue, blurred vision, and headaches along with:
- Frequent urination and thirst: Excess sugar in the blood is passed through the kidneys and into urine. This draws more water into the urine which means more frequent urination. High glucose levels cause thirst even when you are drinking enough fluids.
- Weight loss: Elevated blood sugar levels over time can lead to unexplained weight loss as a result of cells not getting the glucose they need. As a result, they start burning fat instead.
- Numbness: High blood sugar can cause tingling and numbness in the extremities. It is important to note that this is a complication of long-term diabetes and uncontrolled blood sugar levels.
Low Blood Sugar Can Increase Blood Pressure
Our body gets its energy to function properly from glucose, which is found in the carbohydrates we take in from the foods we eat. Insulin is responsible for pulling glucose from the bloodstream into cells, where it’s used for energy.
When our blood sugar levels are low, our body tries to keep essential organs working by causing various changes, including an increase in heart rate and peripheral systolic blood pressure . It also lowers central blood pressure .
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What Happens In Your Body When You Get Stressed
Stress hormones have a big role to play.
When youre experiencing physical or emotional stress, hormones are released that increase your blood sugar. Cortisol and adrenaline are other primary hormones involved.
This is a perfectly natural response. For example, if youre being chased by a barking dog or youre in a dangerous situation, you need these hormones to prepare your body for a fight or flight situation.
But when youre stressed, your body releases these hormones, even if there isnt a major physical threat involved.
The result? Higher blood pressure, increased heart rate and a rise in blood sugar.
The problem becomes more complicated.
If youre consistently under stress, your hormones and sugar will continue to surge.
Over time, this can put you at risk for:
- Heart disease
This is one reason why its so important to treat your stress and anxiety.
Are You At Risk Of Diabetes
Controlling risk factors for blood sugar issues may help you stave off diabetes, even if you have a genetic propensity. According to the American Diabetes Association, the following factors increase your risk of diabetes:
- Impaired glucose tolerance or fasting glucose
- Older than 45
- A family history of diabetes
- Being overweight
- Having low HDL cholesterol, high triglycerides and high blood pressure
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How To Lower Your Blood Pressure
A lot of lowering your blood pressure is down to making positive lifestyle changes. But we know its not always that straightforward, and some people will need medication to help too.
- Try different ways to cope with stress
- Have less caffeine
Your healthcare team can support you with making these changes. Find out what healthcare checks and services you are entitled to.
Your Blood Pressure Test
Your doctor or nurse uses a blood pressure monitor to check your blood pressure. Theyll put a cuff around your arm and inflate it. This restricts the blood flow for a few seconds. This can feel uncomfortable but isnt painful. The cuff then deflates, the monitor takes a reading and your doctor or nurse will take the cuff off.
You should get this test at least once a year. Its usually part of your annual review and is one of your essential diabetes health checks.
If you want to, you can buy a blood pressure monitor yourself to use at home. You can get this from a chemist or pharmacy, or order one from our shop. You dont have to do this, but some people find it helps them manage their diabetes better. In some areas, diabetes care teams have suggested people buy their own home blood pressure monitoring kit, during the coronavirus pandemic while access to routine care is disrupted. You can find a list of blood pressure monitors to use at home from the British and Irish Hypertension Society website.
We know that wont be possible for everyone, and we dont think people should have to pay for these devices. Were calling on the NHS to find other ways to make these available for free.
Its fine to use a monitor yourself, but speak to your healthcare team first to make sure youre using it right. Make a note of your readings and speak to your doctor or nurse if youre ever worried.
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Recognizing The Symptoms Of Ckd
CKD doesnt typically cause any symptoms until kidney function has declined substantially, which is why its important to detect the condition well before any symptoms develop.
Part of the reason we have so much difficulty in diagnosing chronic kidney disease early is that people dont usually get symptoms until their kidneys are at maybe 20 or 30 percent function, says Leisman. Before that, The patient feels perfectly fine and might not go to the doctor.
Initial symptoms of CKD after kidney function has declined substantially, but before kidney failure occurs can also be mild or nonspecific. Thats another reason you shouldnt wait until you experience symptoms to get screened for CKD, especially if you have diabetes, high blood pressure, or other risk factors. As kidney function worsens, your symptoms may worsen or you may develop additional symptoms.
Talk to your doctor if you experience symptoms of CKD. If CKD is suspected, your doctor will ask about your medical history and conduct a physical exam. They may also perform tests, such as a blood test to measure the level of waste products in your blood or a urine test to check for protein, to help make a diagnosis.
How Does Sugar Contribute To Metabolic Syndrome
Sugary beverages and processed foods that contain lots of added sugar that are immediately broken down by the digestive system, entering the bloodstream in high amounts. This causes a spike in blood sugar levels. Lots of glucose is coursing through the blood vessels and in response, the pancreas releases insulin that signals to body tissues to use available glucose to power cellular processes. Though some glucose is vital for survival and normal energy levels, excess glucose causes inflammation and is stored as fat throughout the body and in the liver.
Over time, chronic consumption of excess glucose can cause inflammation that damages the pancreas and makes insulin unresponsive to glucose in the bloodstream. This results in hallmarks of metabolic syndrome, including insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes.
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Even Moderate Doses Of Added Sugar For Short Durations May Cause Harm
Current US per capita intake of added sugars is approximately two to eight times higher than current recommendations by the American Heart Association and the World Health Organization . Considering adolescents specifically, current consumption might be as much as six to 16 times higher.
An increase in sympathetic tone from the overconsumption of fructose is one likely mechanism for the sugars ability to increase heart rate, cardiac output, renal sodium retention and vascular resistance, all of which may interact to elevate blood pressure and increase myocardial oxygen demand.
However, ingestion of sugars including fructose in their naturally occurring biological contexts is not harmful and is likely beneficial.
Just as most dietary sodium does not come from the salt shaker, most dietary sugar does not come from the sugar bowl. Dr James DiNicolantonio, from the Department of Preventive Cardiology at Saint Lukes Mid America Heart Institute on Kansas City, MO, concludes:
Reducing consumption of added sugars by limiting processed foods containing them, made by corporations would be a good place to start.
The evidence shows that even moderate doses of added sugar for short durations may cause substantial harm.
Medical News Today recently reported that regularly drinking high levels of sugar-sweetened soda could lead to the premature aging of immune cells, leaving the body vulnerable to chronic diseases in a similar manner to the effects of smoking.
Does B12 Deficiency Affect Blood Pressure
Vitamin B12 is an essential vitamin for the body, but vitamin B12 has no direct relationship with blood pressure and has little effect on blood pressure. Vitamin B12 deficiency may cause anemia, causing symptoms such as dizziness, fatigue, pale complexion, depression, and memory loss.
Eating foods rich in vitamin B12 is a simple and effective way to supplement vitamin B12. Vitamin B12 is mainly found in animal foods, such as pig liver, chicken liver, goat liver, pig kidney, chicken kidney, goat kidney, milk, goat milk, eggs, duck eggs, quail eggs, beef, mutton, and pork.
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What Other Medications Can Accidentally Cause Low Blood Pressure
There are a variety of other medications that can unintentionally cause your blood pressure to drop, including cardiovascular drugs, diuretics, and beta blockers that are used to treat high blood pressure. Drugs used to treat erectile dysfunction can also result in low blood pressure, as can certain antidepressants, as well as medications prescribed for Parkinsons disease.
High Blood Sugar: Causes Complications And How To Lower Blood Sugar
Your body breaks down glucose for energy using the insulin produced by the pancreas. This is required for our bodies to function. Illness can have an impact on the way our pancreas functions. Read this to learn how high blood sugar can affect your health.
7 minute read
Your body requires energy to function, and this energy comes from food. Specifically, your body breaks down glucose for energy using the insulin produced by the pancreas.
Type 1 and type 2 diabetes cause impairment to this breakdown of sugar in the body, causing blood glucose levels to become irregular. When glucose is not broken down into energy, it can build up in the bloodstream and then becomes a health problem.
Your pancreas produces insulin, which breaks down glucose. With type 1 diabetes, the cells that produce insulin are mistakenly attacked by your immune system. As a result of this autoimmune condition, blood sugar levels can become dangerously high without intervention.
Type 2 diabetes occurs when your body no longer responds to insulin as well as it should and then also causes glucose to accumulate in the blood.
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What Are Some Ways To Increase Blood Pressure
To increase blood pressure, perform 30 to 50 minutes of aerobic exercise every day. Aerobic exercise can increase the bodys lung capacity, strengthen heart function, blood vessel function and lung function, thereby effectively increasing blood pressure.
You can also eat more foods high in sodium and cholesterol. Daily intake of 10 grams to 15 grams of salt. Foods rich in cholesterol include goat brain, chicken liver, pig liver, pig brain, pig feet, eggs, duck eggs, milk, etc.
Lifestyle Changes For Kidney Health
If youve been diagnosed with CKD, The first thing we tell everybody to do is try to control their diabetes and high blood pressure, to prevent further damage, says Leisman.
The good news: Many of the healthy habits that can help you manage diabetes and high blood pressure, such as eating a balanced diet and exercising regularly, can also help keep your kidneys healthy and stop CKD from getting worse.
Once kidney function is lost, it cannot be restored. But there are steps you can take to prevent further damage and slow the progression of CKD.
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Eating Too Much Sugar Can Also Cause High Blood Pressure
Eating too much sugar can also cause high blood pressure?
For hypertensive patients, while controlling salt, we should also pay attention to controlling the intake of sugar. In daily life, we should pay attention to drink less or no sugary drinks, replace sweets with fruits, and put less sugar when cooking.
It is a good habit of food nutrition composition to control the intake of sugar within a reasonable range and reduce the incidence of the three highs.
For a long time, patients with high blood pressure have been asked to eat less salt, because we all know that high blood pressure is directly related to a high-salt diet. However, some hypertensive patients usually take medicine on time and adhere to a light diet. Their blood pressure is still not well controlled.
What is the reason? It turns out that they overlooked another common food-sugar. Many people dont know that eating too much sugar can increase blood pressure.
An article in the American Journal of Cardiology reported that sugar is also a cause of high blood pressure. Sugary soft drinks are the largest source of added sugar in modern diets. Excessive intake will increase the incidence of obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease and other events.
Dealing With Diabetes Can Cause Anxiety
Lets face it: Controlling diabetes is hard work. That in itself is enough to cause worry and stress. In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control, those with diabetes are 20 percent more likely to experience anxiety than those without the disease.
We understand this, and were dedicated to helping alleviate your worry by working together as a team to address any distressing issues.
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