New research suggests that eating sugar causes your blood sugar levels to increase.
The American Heart Association (AHA) and the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) are announcing today that a study conducted in the US and Europe found that people who are overweight or obese, are more likely to have heart disease and diabetes, as well as lower blood sugar.
The study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, looked at data from a population of more than 1.6 million men and women ages 50 to 73 in the United States.
The data came from the Health Professionals Follow-up Study (HPFS) of nearly 2,200 men and 4,000 women.
The HPFS is an ongoing, randomized controlled trial of more and more patients.
“This is a very significant finding,” said Robert Katz, an associate professor of epidemiology and public health at the University of Southern California.
“It’s not surprising that people with heart disease or diabetes or any other disease are also more likely than people without heart disease to have a high blood sugar level.”
Katz and his team used data from the HPFS to calculate how often men and woman had elevated blood sugar in the past three months.
The researchers found that men and men with elevated blood glucose were at a higher risk for having heart disease than men and people without elevated blood sugars.
The researchers also found that the average male and female’s risk for heart disease was higher in those with elevated levels of glucose compared to those with a normal level.
“The study shows that the amount of sugar in your blood may increase the risk of heart disease in men and diabetes in women,” Katz said.
The average level of glucose in people is between 5.5 and 6.0 mg/dL.
A person with a high level of sugar has an increased risk of developing heart disease.
The maximum level of a person’s blood sugar is 5.8 mg/dl.
Katz said the study did not account for people’s weight, ethnicity, or other factors that could have an impact on the risk for the other diseases that are associated with elevated sugar levels.
The new study is the first to show that eating a lot of sugar is linked to an increased blood sugar risk.
It found that eating more than six teaspoons of sugar a day increased the risk by 2.6%.
“The findings are not just for people who already have elevated blood pressure,” Katz told ABC News.
“They’re also for people with other health conditions.”
The researchers analyzed the risk factors for heart and diabetes from blood sugar measurements in more than 16,000 men and 10,000 female adults.
The research was funded by the National Institutes of Health, the Department of Veterans Affairs, the National Science Foundation, and the NIH.ABC News’ Jennifer Wright contributed to this report.