Sunday, September 7, 2014

Eat banana to reduce risk of stroke, death after menopause

A new study has found that post-menopausal women who consume potassium-rich foods like banana face lesser risk of stroke and death. Senior author Sylvia Wassertheil-Smoller, Ph.D., from Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, NY, said that previous studies had shown that potassium consumption may lower blood pressure.
The findings give women another reason to eat their fruits and vegetables for they are good sources of potassium, which not only lowers post-menopausal women’s risk of stroke, but also death. Researchers studied 90,137 post-menopausal women, ages 50 to 79, for an average 11 years. They looked at how much potassium the women consumed, as well as if they had strokes, including ischemic and hemorrhagic strokes, or died during the study period.
Women in the study were stroke-free at the start and their average dietary potassium intake was 2,611 mg/day. Results of this study are based on potassium from food, not supplements. The researchers found: Women who ate the most potassium were 12 percent less likely to suffer stroke in general and 16 percent less likely to suffer an ischemic stroke than women who ate the least.
Women who ate the most potassium were 10 percent less likely to die than those who ate the least. Among women who did not have hypertension (whose blood pressure was normal and they were not on any medications for high blood pressure), those who ate the most potassium had a 27 percent lower ischemic stroke risk and 21 percent reduced risk for all stroke types, compared to women who ate the least potassium in their daily diets. Among women with hypertension (whose blood pressure was high or they were taking drugs for high blood pressure), those who ate the most potassium had a lower risk of death, but potassium intake did not lower their stroke risk.
Researchers suggested that higher dietary potassium intake might be more beneficial before high blood pressure develops. They also said there was no evidence of any association between potassium intake and hemorrhagic stroke, which could be related to the low number of hemorrhagic strokes in the study. The findings suggested that women needed to eat more potassium-rich foods.
You won’t find high potassium in junk food. Some foods high in potassium include bananas, white and sweet potatoes, and white beans. While increasing potassium intake is probably a good idea for most older women, it could be dangerous to the heart for people who had too much potassium in their blood. The study was observational and included only post-menopausal women. Researchers also did not take sodium intake into consideration, so the potential importance of a balance between sodium and potassium is not among the findings. 

Other health benefits of bananas 
Relieves muscle cramps
Bananas are a great way of dealing with muscle cramps. The high magnesium and potassium content, bananas are the best way to make up for the minerals in your body. It eases out  the muscles and protects you from any further chances of such dreadful cramps.
Keeps blood pressure in check
Bananas, are rich in potassium and very low in sodium thus help in managing blood pressure better. They help maintain water balance in the body and detoxify the body to protect you against heart attacks. 
 Prevents acidity 
Bananas are very effective antacids and coat the inner lining of the stomach and suppress acid secretion. This  protects the stomach from ulcers and acidity.
Beat constipation
Both the fruit and stem are rich in fibre and  pectin which helps assist bowel motility and eases out constipation. Alternatively  you can even drink the juice prepared from the banana plant stem.

No comments:

Post a Comment