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Surprising Science

BPA in Canned Food Linked to High Blood Pressure

High blood pressure has just been linked to canned food, but it's not just the sodium that's the culprit--it's the BPA from the can's lining.

High blood pressure has another contributor and this one has more to do with the containers housing your food than its content. You may want to consider how many canned goods you’ve been consuming, and it’s not all about the sodium. It may also be the BPA that’s lining those cans and various plastic containers that could be raising your blood pressure.

Alice Park of Time has pointed to a recent study out of South Korea that reveals more concerning evidence about the dangers of BPA. Previous studies have linked the chemical Bisphenol A or BPA to higher risks of asthma, obesity, and brain development issues in children. There’s also some studies that even link it to reproductive issues. The list goes on, and Yun-Chul Hong from the department of Preventive Medicine and the Environmental Health Center at Seoul National University is about to add one more.

The study, published in Hypertension, took 60 participants who were aged 60 years or older. The researchers instructed the participants to visit the the study site three times, during that time they would drink the same beverage from either two glass bottles, two cans, or one can and one glass bottle at a time. Researchers then measured the BPA levels from their urine, blood pressure, and heart rate two hours after consumption.

Participants who drank from the two canned beverages had an acute increase of about 4.5mmHG in blood pressure and their BPA levels were over 1,600 percent. An increase of 20mmHG would double the risk of heart disease, and while it did not go that high, Hong still sees it as a cause for concern.

In an email to Time discussing the results, Hong wrote:

Because hypertension is a well-known risk factor for heart disease, our study showing the link of BPA exposure to elevation in blood pressure strongly suggests that BPA exposure may increase the risk of heart disease.”

Clinicians and patients, particularly hypertension or heart disease patients, should be aware of the potential clinical problems for blood pressure elevation when consuming canned foods or using plastics containing BPA.”

If you’re doctor notes your blood pressure is high next visit, perhaps it’s time to think about a change of diet in addition to examining the make-up of your food containers.

Read more at Time

Photo Credit: Keoni Cabral/Flickr


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