It's Sugar - and Not Salt - that Raises your Blood Pressure


It looks as though medicine has been fingering the wrong guy when it comes to heart disease prevention and lowering blood pressure. For years we've been told that salt is the major villain, but it appears that sugars in processed foods---and high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) in particular---may be the real culprit.

Not only is the case against the salt/blood pressure theory unproven, it may have done some harm. In fact, we need to consume between 3 and 6 g of salt every day for optimum health, and amounts below that could be bad for our health, reckon researchers from St Luke's Mid America Heart Institute in Kansas.

Both salt and sugars are often found in most processed foods---but the sugars are the problem. HFCS is singled out by the researchers because it is the most frequently-used sweetener in processed foods, and especially fruit-flavored and fizzy drinks. Sugar-sweetened drinks account for 180,000 deaths a year.

People who consume high levels of HFCS are three times more likely to suffer from cardiovascular disease compared to those who keep levels below 10 per cent of their overall diet.

It's been estimated that average consumption of dietary sugars in the US is between 77 and 152 pounds a year, which is equivalent to 24 to 47 teaspoons of sugar a day.

(Source: Open Heart, 2014; 1(1): e000167)

Insulin resistance is a big factor today that may lead into blood pressure problems and well as pre-diabetic factors. How do you know if you fall in this category? Increased Cholesterol, increased LDL, increased Triglycerides, decreased HDL, increased glucose, increased Insulin, and increased Hemoglobin A1C are all factors on insulin resistance. The Standard American Diet is heavily sugar based and is a big contributing factor of why we are seeing so much insulin and blood pressure problems today. Sugar releases serotonin, dopamine, and other feel good endorphins in our brains that can lead to sugar addiction.

Hydration tip for the winter: Drink 1-2 20oz. of water a day with 1/2 tsp. of Celtic Sea Salt in each of the 20oz. Water alone can not hydrate your body with out the proper electrolyte components.

Dr. J

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