Scientists: how to strengthen the heart and blood vessels

UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY NEWS) — Scientists have found that excessive consumption of foods high in sulfur amino acids – meat, dairy products, nuts and soy – increases the risk of cardiovascular disease, and low-protein plant foods, on the contrary, have a positive effect on the health of the heart and blood vessels.

The results of the study are published in the journal Lancet EClinical Medicine.

American researchers from the College of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania under the direction of Professor John Richie studied the dietary composition and blood biomarkers of more than 11 thousand participants in the Third National Health and Nutrition Survey (NHANES III), conducted in the USA in 1988-1994, and found that people who preferred low-protein foods had lower levels of markers of cardiometabolic diseases.

“For decades, it has been known that diets low in sulfur amino acids have a positive effect on animal lifespan,” Professor Richie said in a university press release. “This study provides the first epidemiological evidence that excessive consumption of sulfur amino acids increases the risk of chronic disease in humans.”

Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins. The analysis concerned only sulfuric amino acids – methionine and cysteine. Scientists evaluated the level of biomarkers such as cholesterol, triglycerides, glucose and insulin in the blood of participants after ten to sixteen-hour fasting.

“These biomarkers indicate an individual risk of disease,” says Richie. “Their levels are determined by the long-term dietary habits of humans.”

According to nutritionists, the following foods are enough for a person weighing 60 kilograms to meet the daily requirement for sulfuric amino acids: one slice of bread, half an avocado, one egg, half a glass of raw cabbage, six cherry tomatoes, 60 grams of chicken breast, a cup of brown rice, three quarters of a cup zucchini, three tablespoons of butter, a cup of spinach, an average apple, pizza with a diameter of 20 centimeters and a tablespoon of almonds.

However, the average American consumes almost two and a half times more sulfur amino acids than the estimated daily requirement.

“Many people in the United States prefer foods rich in meat and dairy products,” said Xiang Gao, director of the Nutrition Epidemiology Laboratory at Pennsylvania State University and one of the authors of the study. “These foods contain more sulfur amino acids, so it’s not surprising.” that many exceed average requirements.”

The authors note that it is useful for the cardiovascular system to partially or completely replace meat and dairy products with fruits and vegetables, which have much less sulfur amino acids, but emphasize that their study is not complex and does not confirm the usefulness of a vegetarian diet for the body’s health in whole.

“We saw a clear connection between certain dietary habits and higher levels of blood biomarkers that put a person at risk for cardiometabolic diseases,” says Professor Richie. “But only a long study can confirm whether people at risk are more likely to get sick.”


This article is written and prepared by our foreign editors writing for OBSERVATORY NEWS from different countries around the world – material edited and published by OBSERVATORY staff in our newsroom.

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