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Study Shows Allopurinol Helps Fight Hypertension for People on a High-Sugar Diet
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Fructose, Uric Acid, and Blood Pressure
The study included 74 middle-age men whose average age was 51. All of the
men ate 200 grams (800 calories) of fructose every day for two weeks in
addition to their regular diets.
To put this in perspective, a recent national health survey suggests that
added sugars account for about 400 calories consumed by the average American
Almost all of the sugars and syrups used to sweeten processed foods contain
roughly equal amounts of fructose and another sugar, glucose.
Table sugar is made up of about 50% fructose and 50% glucose, while
high-fructose corn syrup is 55% fructose and 45% glucose.
All the men in the study ate the high-fructose diets, but half also took the
After two weeks on the high-sugar diet, the men who took the drug showed
significant declines in uric acid levels and no significant increase in blood
In contrast, men who did not take the drug had increases of about 6 points
in systolic blood pressure (the top blood pressure number) and 3 points in
diastolic blood pressure (the bottom blood pressure number).
American Heart Association Recommendations
While it is too soon to recommend taking uric acid-lowering drugs to lower
blood pressure, it is clear that too much sugar in the diet can hurt the heart,
The American Heart Association reached the same conclusion in guidelines
published last month.
The group recommends that:
- Women eat no more than 25 grams (100 calories) of added sugar per day,
which is equivalent to about six teaspoons.
- Men should eat no more than 37.5 grams (150 calories) of added sugar, which
is equivalent to nine teaspoons.
- Foods high in added sugars should not take the place of foods that contain
"Sugar has no nutritional value other than to provide calories," University
of Vermont professor of nutrition Rachel K. Johnson, PhD, MPH, notes in a
She adds that soft drinks and other sugar-sweetened beverages are the No.1
source of added sugar in the typical American's diet.