Low Fat vs. Low Carb – Which is Better for Lowering Blood Pressure?

A low carb and high fat diet is the base of most successful weight loss programs, including the Atkins diet. The mechanism behind weight gain on a high-carb diet is now pretty clear – eating carbohydrates causes spikes in blood sugar, which releases insulin. As a result, any excess sugar is stored by the body as fat. This mechanism is so effective that you can easily gain 5-10 lbs of fat in a few days and more importantly – quickly undo any progress that you have made. Therefore, it is important not to indulge in carb binges soon after you have successfully lost weight. Regardless, lets look at the differences between a low fat and a low carb diet:

Low fat diets and blood pressure

A low-fat and a high-carbohydrate diet is based on the obsolete theory that fat is bad because it is high in calories. It also causes cholesterol and blood lipid problems. At least that’s what we thought. We now know that fat is the main source of energy for the body, and it makes up nearly 100% of cellular walls. Therefore, a low fat diet is generally speaking not a good idea, unless you are trying to deal with a specific medical condition, which requires it.

Losing weight on a low fat diet is also difficult – in order to do so, you would have to eat very frequent and small carbohydrate-rich meals. Eating anything more than can be stored in your muscles and liver (which is about 800 kcal) will result in a fat gain, especially if you are predisposed to gaining weight (which you probably are, since you are reading this article).

High fat, low carb – does it really cause hypertension?

This is the most effective strategy, when it comes to losing weight. But wait, isn’t fat high in calories? It is. In fact, it has more than twice the calories of carbohydrates per gram. However, there are countless examples that support the fact that caloric intake and weight loss are connected only partially. You can easily lose weight while consuming 3000 kcal per day. You can also keep staying overweight, despite your best efforts to starve yourself. It is all in the source of your calories and not the amount.

But what is the best way to lower your blood pressure? Your diet has a big impact on this, but most of the things you have probably already heard about this are wrong – high fat diets do NOT raise blood pressure on their own. To learn more about how to lower your blood pressure, read this report.

The Importance of Vitamin C

Vitamin C is one of the most commonly taken vitamins. However, there is still a large percentage of people who don’t get enough. Vitamin C is the primary antioxidant in the body and protects it’s cells from free radical damage. In addition to that, it is also used by the body to produce collagen – an elastic substance, which makes more than 50% of your skin and blood vessels.

Long-term effects of a chronic vitamin c deficiency

Many people today are afraid of high cholesterol. Why? Because it leads to heart disease and arteriosclerosis. However, this is not the whole truth. The reason why high cholesterol is suspected to increase the chance of dying from a heart attack is simple – the cholesterol builds up on the walls of your arteries and as a result – a plaque forms. This causes blood vessels to become more and more narrow, until they barely let any blood through.

Vitamin C has a big implication in this – cholesterol doesn’t build up on the arterial walls, just because it is ‘high’. It does so in order to repair a damage in the structure of the wall. One of the most common causes of such damage is a chronic low-level deficiency of vitamin c, which in turn slows down your body’s production of collagen and other several other, vital to the circulatory system organic chemicals.

Multivitamins vs. Taking Vitamins Separately

I am a big proponent of taking vitamins separately. There are many reasons for that and I will now list some of them:

Zinc or Zinc Aspartate?

Many people don’t look at the form of the vitamins in most multivitamin supplements. For example, zinc aspartate and magnesium aspartate are two often used forms of magnesium. Unfortunately, they break down into aspartic acid, which is certainly not the best thing for you. When buying your vitamins separately, you can choose exactly which form of which vitamin or mineral you want.

Dosage

Most people don’t need doses as high as in most multivitamins, especially when it comes to B-vitamins. Although those vitamins are water-soluble and have no established toxic levels, Is taking 50 times the normal dose of a certain vitamin healthy? By normal dose, I mean the dose you can obtain from food. I don’t think so and don’t see a point in doing so. In addition, many multivitamins will have low levels of magnesium and vitamin D, which are both extremely important. A part of the reason why is cost – B complex vitamins are the cheapest and it is no coincidence that many multivitamins include more than 3000% RDA of them, especially if they are designed for athletes.

Minerals?

On the other hand, taking minerals together seems to cause no issues at all. I would advice against men taking iron supplements, as they have been linked to a variety of complications and liver problems. Women on the other hand menstruate, which is ho why get rid of excess iron in their body.  The problem with getting your minerals from food is the depleted soil, especially in the US. Magnesium is a prime example of this and less than 30% of people get their RDI.