This article is based on a research published in the American Journal of Hypertension which shows a direct link between eating food away from home and high blood pressure. According to the researchers this is very true especially with young Asian adults.
High blood pressure also known as hypertension has serious implications an individual’s health. It is considered to be one of the main risk factors that attributes to death caused due to cardiovascular diseases.
What happens during hypertension?
When a person is suffering from high blood pressure, the force of blood pushing up against the walls of the blood vessels is greater making it difficult for the heart to pump blood. This eventually leads to heart failure and heart attack. People with hypertension or high blood pressure face other risks too like stroke, aneurysm and kidney failure.
Is it wise to eat out?
According to research in the US nearly 2 million children and 70 million adults are affected by high blood pressure. In India too with a change in lifestyle, more people eat away from home and are at a greater risk of hypertension. When you eat meals away from home, it will lead to higher intake of salt, saturated fat and also calories. To further investigate the ill effects of eating out and its association with high blood pressure or hypertension, the researchers surveyed about 501 young adults who attended university in Singapore in the age group of 18 to 40 years. This study is the first to show the association between eating out and increased risk of high blood pressure. The survey was based on the collected information on the following aspects of the students:
- Blood Pressure
- BMI or Body Mass Index
- Physical Activity Levels
- Frequency of Eating out
What are the results of the Survey?
The following inferences were drawn from the statistical analysis of the data:
- 27.4% of the students had pre-hypertension
- 9% of the female participants and 49% of the male participants had pre-hypertension
- 38% of the students had more than 12 meals away from home per week.
- The researches further highlighted that compared to without hypertension or pre-hypertension, students with hypertension or pre-hypertension who eat out more often would end up having a higher BMI, have lower levels of physical activity and also be current smokers.
- Eating just one extra meal out per week is associated with a 6% increase in risk for pre-hypertension or high blood pressure.
According to Study author Prof. Tazeen Jafar, from the Health Services and Systems Program at Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School Singapore it is the first study to show a link between eating out and high blood pressure. He says:
“While there have been studies conducted in the United States and Japan to find behaviors associated with hypertension, very few have surveyed a Southeast Asian population. Our research plugs that gap and highlights lifestyle factors associated with pre-hypertension and hypertension that are potentially modifiable, and would be applicable to young adults globally, especially those of Asian descent.”
Based on the results of the study, the authors suggest the following:
- Clinicians should advise young adults especially younger male patients to modify their eating behaviors
- They should be made more aware of the risk for pre-hypertension, high blood pressure and hypertension
- The findings should help to bring forth policy changes, such as regulating salt and fat content in eateries
Next, the team will further embark on a related study which will help them to examine and explore the potential interventions that will help to prevent hypertension among young adults in Singapore.
Medical News (MNT) reports on a series of studies conducted by researchers at the University of Illinois which investigate the benefits of making food more porous at a micro structural level which will help to protect against hypertension. By making the food more porous more salt will be allowed to be released during chewing. This should ensure that the manufacturers lower the overall level of salt content in their foods.
MNT further reports that according to a research published in the Journal of the American College of CardiologyAsian-Americans are at a greater riskheart diseaseand hemorrhagic stroke than the Americans or non-Hispanic.
Doctors at Poona Preventive Cardiology center in Pune avoid angioplasty bypass by providing the best heart treatment without angioplasty bypass. They are of the opinion that the well being of an individual mainly depends on their habits and choice of lifestyle. Eating out will lead to increased blood pressure causing heart attacks and other heart problems. Eating out excessively will have multiple adverse effects on your body wherein high blood pressure tops the list. Individuals whose job entails excess travel on work might find it difficult to maintain a healthy diet. The experts advise the following while eating out:
- Be more cautious while placing orders
- Always select foods prepared with healthier cooking techniques such as steaming, grilling, broiling, baking, roasting, poaching or stir-frying
- Choice of appetizers should include seasonal vegetables, fruits or fish.>
- Ensure that your food is be prepared with less salt and should not contain MSG or added salt-containing ingredients.
- It is ideal to limit condiments that are high in salt like pickles, ketchup, mustard and sauces.
- In the case of salads request for olive oil and vinegar for the salad dressing