Are you a potato lover? Then we have bad news for you.
Everyone knows that chips are extremely bad for your health but now expert are warning that eating potato in any form – baked, boiled or as mash – increases the risk of high blood pressure.
According to research, involving more than 187,000 American men and women, conducted by experts from Harvard Medical School, eating potatoes four times a week increases the risk of blood pressure or hypertension by as much as 11%.
Four servings of French fries raises risk by 17%, surprisingly, but chips have no such effect.
However, it doesn’t mean chips are good for you, remember that their consumption raises other health risks.
The scientists believe that the starch in potatoes is to blame for hypertension and various blood sugar problems.
As potatoes have a high glycaemic index, these starchy carbohydrates rapidly transform into sugars in the body, triggering a sharp rise in blood sugar levels.
Actually, not all experts agree with the findings, some of them believe that the study shows an association, not cause and effect.
Besides, the scientists didn’t measure other factors in the diet such as salt intale or lifestyle, which could have significantly affected the results.
Professor Tom Sanders, of King’s College London, said: “Overweight, high intake of salt and alcohol and a low intake of potassium are well-known to increase blood pressure but the effects of individual foods are less certain.
Generally, fruit and vegetables are associated with lower blood pressure with the exception of pickled vegetables.
However, potatoes, especially chips, are often consumed with added salt which may be part of the explanation for this association with raised blood pressure.
I don’t think this study should be used to discourage people from eating potatoes.”