Navigation Links
Simple Carbs Pose Heart Risk for Women

Danger doesn't affect men, who process carbohydrates more slowly, expert says

MONDAY, April 12 (HealthDay News) -- A diet rich in carbohydrates that are quickly transformed into sugar in the blood raises the risk of heart disease for women, a new Italian study finds.

The same effect, however, is not seen in men, according to the report, published April 12 in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

The study, by researchers at Italy's National Cancer Institute, looked not only at total carbohydrate intake but also at what is known as the glycemic index of those carbohydrates -- a measure of how quickly and to what extent blood sugar rises after intake of specific carbohydrates.

Carbohydrate foods with similar calorie content can show widely different scores on the glycemic index. Carbohydrates with a high glycemic index include corn flakes, white bread and white rice. Those with lower scores include whole wheat products and sweet potatoes.

"A high glycemic index is known to increase the concentration of triglycerides and lower the concentration of HDL cholesterol, the good kind," explained Victoria J. Drake, director of the Micronutrient Information Center at the Linus Pauling Institute of Oregon State University, who has studied the subject. "Those adverse effects make it a stronger risk factor for heart disease."

The Italian researchers got their information on dietary intake from questionnaires filled out by 15,171 men and 32,578 women. Following them for nearly eight years, the researchers found that women who consumed the most carbohydrates overall had about twice the incidence of heart disease as those who consumed the least. Closer analysis showed that the risk was associated with higher intake of high-glycemic foods.

"Thus, a high consumption of carbohydrates from high-glycemic index foods, rather than the overall quantity of carbohydrates consumed, appears to influence the influence of developing coronary heart disease," the researchers wrote.

Previous studies have seen the same effect in other groups of women, Drake said. They include the Nurses Health Study, done in the United States, and studies of women in the Netherlands.

No effect from total carbohydrate consumption or consumption of foods with a high-glycemic index was seen in men in the Italian study, a pattern also seen in other studies, Drake added.

"There is definitely a gender difference," she noted.

The difference might be due to the action of sex hormones, the researchers speculate. Male hormones, androgens, appear to slow the transformation of carbohydrates into blood sugar, whereas the female hormone estrogen speeds the process, she said.

Dr. Suzanne Steinbaum, director of women and heart disease at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, said the study shows the need for women to be more aware of the nature of the carbohydrates in their diet.

"An emphasis needs to be placed on a diet that is not simply low in carbohydrates but rather low in simple sugars, as measured by the glycemic index," Steinbaum said.

There's a simple way to determine the glycemic index of a food, she said.

"Look at the label," Steinbaum said. "It says 'carbohydrates.' Under that, it says 'sugars.' When you have a high number for sugars, that's a way to know what the glycemic index is."

That index can differ widely in foods that don't appear to be different, she said. One breakfast cereal may have a sugar content of 16 grams, but another may have just 3 grams to 6 grams.

"If you see a high level of sugar, that's the one to stay away from," Steinbaum said.

More information

The Linus Pauling Institute has more about the glycemic index.

SOURCES: Victoria J. Drake, Ph.D., research associate, Linus Pauling Institute, Oregon State University, Portland; Suzanne Steinbaum, D.O., director, women and heart disease, Heart and Vascular Institute, Lenox Hill Hospital, New York City; April 12, 2010, Archives of Internal Medicine

Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. A Simple Thank You Brings Rewards to All
2. Simple Memory Test May Detect Early Alzheimers
3. Simple Test May Spot Early Lung Cancer
4. The Simple and Revolutionary Power to OUTSMART YOUR GENES Out April 6th -- Predictive Medicine Pioneer Dr. Brandon Colby Releases Book
5. Simple Forms Help Docs Do Better Breast Exams
6. Many With Arthritis Find Simple Solutions for Relief
7. Offers Simple Tax Saving Tips That Can Improve Credit Scores
8. UAB-led study shows simple steps could reduce stillbirths by up to 1 million
9. Simple Concussion Test Measures Reaction Time
10. Father Channels His Grief into Advocacy, Promotes Simple Actions to Make Hospitals Safer for Children
11. SimpleWebBox Offers Free Websites for Non-Profit Organizations
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/28/2015)... ... , ... Safe storage for contraceptive devices may not always be easy to ... and the other from Bradley Beach, New Jersey, there is an easy solution to ... to replace NuvaRings more often than necessary. As such, it affords peace of mind ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 28, 2015 , ... There is only one major question facing ... last year? , This question has not been an easy question to answer. Especially ... age and the younger workforce don’t share the same discipline around working long hours. ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... 27, 2015 , ... The rapid speed at which Americans ... more care is needed, especially with Alzheimer’s, dementia and other cognitive conditions becoming ... The forgotten part of this equation: 80 percent of medical care occurs in ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... 27, 2015 , ... Lizzie’s Lice Pickers just announced a special promotion that ... of their purchase of lice treatment product. In addition, customers will receive a complimentary ... spokesperson. “Finding lice is a sure way to ruin the holidays, so we encourage ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... , ... November 27, 2015 , ... ... of progress through sharing, the 2016 Building Better Radiology Marketing Programs ... will begin on Sunday, March 6, 2016, at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/26/2015)... Nov. 26, 2015 Research and Markets ... the "2016 Future Horizons and Growth Strategies ... Supplier Shares, Country Segment Forecasts, Competitive Intelligence, Emerging ... --> --> This ... the Italian therapeutic drug monitoring market, including emerging ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... , Nov. 25, 2015  Amgen (NASDAQ: AMGN ... Application (BLA) with the United States ... 501, a biosimilar candidate to Humira ® (adalimumab). ... application submitted to the FDA and represents Amgen,s first ... Sean E. Harper , M.D., executive vice president of ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... Nov. 25, 2015  ARKRAY USA ... to provide evidence demonstrating the accuracy of its blood ... on Insulin Resistance, Diabetes and Cardiovascular Disease in ... the Company,s GLUCOCARD ® 01 meter and the ... requirements. The ability to accurately measure glucose levels in ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: