(NaturalHealth365) Stunning research from the University of Alabama at Birmingham is showing that the consumption of enough potassium – an essential mineral – can actually reduce the risk of heart disease. In addition, we already know (from other studies) that potassium can improve kidney health, brain function, blood sugar regulation and muscle strength.
Thankfully, most people can easily access two delicious foods – loaded with potassium. (Do you know which ones they are?)
Answer: bananas and avocados! (naturally, organic varieties would be best)
Researchers found that a deficiency of dietary potassium led to aortic stiffness and calcified arteries. However, ideal levels of potassium resulted in improved markers related to heart health and a protective effect against heart disease.
Reduce the risk of heart disease by improving arterial health
The researchers also gained insights into the molecular mechanisms that underlie how low and high potassium levels affect our health. Hopefully, this information will spark the development of non-toxic nutritional therapies in the future – which can effectively address nutrient deficiencies related to heart disease risk. (No doubt, doctors would be wise to embrace the healing power of nutrition)
The researchers approached the study from three perspectives: by feeding groups of mice varying levels of potassium in their daily diet, looking at mouse artery cross-sections, and examining smooth vascular muscle cells in mice exposed to varying potassium levels.
By looking at both living mice and molecular processes in a culture medium, the researchers were able to find a causative link between low dietary potassium, heart disease and the underlying pathogenic mechanism.
Potassium rich foods help maintain ideal blood pressure and electrolyte balance
Low levels of potassium were undeniably linked with increased vascular calcification. The low-potassium mice also showed increased aortal stiffness. By contrast, higher amounts of potassium improved health in these areas as well as overall cardiovascular health. These results were also reflected at the molecular level.
Potassium is an electrolyte that offsets sodium’s effects in the body, helping to regulate blood pressure. Potassium also helps to maintain an ideal acid and base balance in the body.
It’s important to realize that low potassium has already been linked with cardiovascular disease and high blood pressure. Of course, another cardiovascular disease risk factor would be the overconsumption of processed sodium (i.e. table salt). This research simply emphasizes the importance of getting enough potassium – on a daily basis.
Favor potassium-rich foods for protection against heart disease
A 2011 study headed by Quanhe Yang, PhD and published in JAMA showed persons who consumed around 4,069 mg potassium daily had a nearly 5 percent reduced risk of dying from ischemic heart disease compared with persons consuming 1,000 mg of potassium per day.
Some of the symptoms of low potassium levels include fatigue, muscle weakness, muscle cramps, tingling, numbness, nausea/vomiting, constipation, heart palpitations and unquenchable thirst.
Since we know that bananas and avocados are rich in potassium, eating these fruits regularly will help to reduce the risk of atherosclerosis (plaque filled, stiff arteries) and other factors that contribute to heart disease. By the way, other foods that are rich in potassium include: beans, tomatoes, potatoes and dark leafy greens.
You can enjoy these foods on their own or mixed into your favorite smoothie, breakfast cereal and salads. So, enjoy your heart healthy lifestyle – starting today.
Sources for this article include:
Cancer & Heart Disease
NaturalHealth365 is a premium source of trending and popular health-related news, science, testimony & research articles on the most up to date and relevant natural health information. The Food & Nutrition articles found herein are meant to inform and advise our site visitors on eating healthy, nutritious foods and safely using supplements and vitamins to achieve optimal health.
Join thousands of daily visitors staying informed and involved on Natural Health 365! We seek out scientific solutions with proven results and it is our mission to keep you up to date on the latest information! Articles range in topic from the causes of cancer, cancer-fighting foods, to natural cancer treatments, cancer prevention & specific research-backed information on Breast Cancer, Prostate Cancer, etc. We also write extensively on Heart Disease because it is accounts for 25% of all deaths in the United States – that’s one in four! We take an in depth look at the symptoms of heart disease, the causes and treatment of high blood pressure, benefits of CoQ10 and healthy, natural ways to unclog arteries.
Read Some of Our Most Popular Articles
Grape Seed Extract More Effective than Chemotherapy, Olive Oil is AWESOME, Store Bought Almond Milk is Basically Just Sugar Water, Antioxidants, Cancer & Blueberries.
More Food & Nutrition Articles
Fresh Organic Produce Fights Cancer, Susan G. Komen on Organic Foods, Hemp Seeds for Inflammation, Pau D’Arco For Improved Immunity
In addition to publishing articles on cutting edge natural cancer treatments and heart disease prevention, we also aim to connect healthy lifestyles, diets and balanced consumption of dietary supplements to long-lasting cancer-free health and adding happy years to your life. For example, did you know that the amount of emotional stress in your life can contribute to your risk of cancer? Or that raw, expeller-pressed olive oil has cancer fighting qualities? Perhaps you didn’t know that Fresh Organic Produce has been found to have higher concentrations of key, cancer-fighting anti-oxidants and vitamins than conventional produce? You can find all of that information and more right here on Natural Health 365.
Join Our Email List
Each day, visitors sign up for our weekly informative news sent directly to their email or RSS feed agregator. We send out three weekly emails keeping you informed and involved on the latest Natural Health News, information about our FREE SHOWS and updates on your favorite topics including Food & Nutrition, Cancer & Heart Disease, Vaccines & Autism, & – of course – GMOs & Dangerous Chemicals!
You can also check out our VIP member area, The Inner Circle, where you get access to thousands of recorded interview (audio/video), pod casts, & literature by some of the worlds foremost experts on Natural Health and Treatments that could save you thousands! Learn how to REVERSE disease without the use of toxic and expensive medications.
Natural Health 365 also is a venue for webinars on various topics, has a flourishing e-commerce store where you can purchase vitamins, pro biotics, supplements and unique products such as Grazing Goat Whey Protein.
Grazing Goat Whey Protein™ is formulated exclusively for the health-conscious consumer looking for the finest whey protein nutritional supplement on the planet.* Best of all, this goat whey protein comes from goats that graze – 365 days per year – on pesticide and chemical free pastures. No hormones, antibiotics or pesticides are used – ever. This product is non-GMO and gluten free.