A new study carried out by specialists from Harvard says that there is a link between eating potatoes and having high blood pressure. Dr. Lea Borgi, from the renal division at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, led the team that assessed the medical history of almost 200.000 women and men. These people participated in different studies where they had to describe in detail their everyday diet. After analyzing the data, the team found a link between people that eat potatoes four or more times a week and high blood pressure. The study was published in the British Medical Journal on May 17, 2016.
Dr. Borgi explained that potatoes are one of the starchy vegetables that has a high glycemic index, which indicates how much a vegetable can rise sugar in the blood. However, she said the research team does not have bulletproof evidence that says potatoes cause high blood pressure, the cohort shows that participants who consumed the starchy rich vegetable 4 or more times a week had problems controlling their blood pressure.
The result of the study is important because the government recently included potatoes as the starchy ingredient in its diet programs all over the country.
In spite of all this, there are a lot of nutritionists and other specialists around the world defending the good old potato. They say the problem is the things people accompany it with, things like bacon, sour cream, butter and many other may be the real culprits behind the elevation in blood pressure. They say there are a healthy way and a bad way to eat vegetables, and fries, for example, are not the healthiest of the methods.
There are lots of aspects the study does not cover, such as physical activity and family history, and Dr. Borgi is fully aware of that. She says the research team expects that this study encourages similar research in order to achieve the perfect balanced diet.
But what is blood pressure?
According to the Mayo Clinic, “High blood pressure is a common condition in which the long-term force of the blood against your artery walls is high enough that it may eventually cause health problems, such as heart disease.”
So basically, blood pressure is determined by the amount of blood your heart pumps compared to the flow arteries can withstand. Mayo clinic says people can suffer from blood pressure for years without having symptoms, but the damage to the arteries and veins does not stop. Fortunately, it is easy to detect and to control, but the bad news is that eventually, almost everybody will have to deal it. It is one of those things that comes with age.
Blood pressure UK says that eating too much salt, not eating enough fruits or vegetables and overindulging in alcohol can trigger the problem. They also said that being physically active and avoiding obesity will keep it at bay.