- High consumption of potato increases the risk of hypertension
- Potatoes have a high glycemic index that increases the blood
sugar levels rapidly.
- Baked, boiled and mashed potatoes increase the risk of blood
pressure in women but not in men.
of potato is linked to increased risk of hypertension
, according to a US hospital-based
are good sources of potassium, a
mineral that helps lower blood pressure; and high glycemic index, which
increase the blood sugar levels rapidly that can put additional stress on the
blood vessels, contributing to high blood pressure.
Potatoes are one
of the staple foods and the most commonly consumed vegetable in the United
States. The association of high potato consumption with hypertension risk
is a public health problem in the US
because potatoes have recently been included in the government sponsored food
‘People who ate four or more servings a week of potato whether baked, mashed or boiled had a higher risk of developing hypertension.’
based at Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston,
followed over 187,000 American adults for more than 20 years. The participants
had enrolled in three prospective US cohort studies: The Nurses' Health Study,
the Nurses' Health Study II and the Health Professionals Follow-up Study.
participants were given a questionnaire to collect the information of
hypertension diagnosed by a healthcare provider. The questionnaires were
completed and returned every two years. Similar questionnaires were given to
the participants to update the dietary intake of each food including potatoes
for every four years. The questions asked about the potatoes were: baked,
boiled or mashed potatoes (either one potato or one cup), French fries (one
serving) and potato chips
(one small bag).
The findings of
the study showed that participants who reported the intake of four or more
servings a week of baked, boiled or mashed potatoes, had an 11 percent higher
risk of developing hypertension when compared with participants who consumed
one or less than one serving a month.
of French fries was found to increase the risk of hypertension. However, high
consumption of potato chips was not associated with an increased risk of
hypertension. Participants who reported consumption of four or more servings a
week of potato chips had a lower risk of developing hypertension.
Moderation is the Key
not be eliminated entirely from the diet as they are good sources of potassium,
dietary fiber, vitamin C, and vitamin B6. Instead of avoiding potatoes,
reducing the frequency of consumption and controlling portion sizes might help lower the risk of hypertension
potatoes in a healthy way by changing the cooking method
or adding protein or healthy oil can
reduce the disease risk. Herbs can be included to potato dishes to reduce
as well as enhance the flavor.
The authors of the study suggested that
replacing one serving a day of potato dishes with one serving of a non-starchy
vegetable such as broccoli
can lower the risk of developing
hypertension by 7 percent.
Reynolds, a nutritionist at the University of New South Wales, said, "I would
recommend potato salad where you cook and then cool the potato, when you do
that the structure of the carbohydrate changes so that it becomes resistant to
digestion and therefore have a lower glycemic index."
Intake and Incidence of Hypertension; Lea Borgi, Eric B Rimm, Walter C Willett,
John P Forman; BMJ 2016;353:i2351