High Blood Pressure is the Deadliest Risk Factor in the World.

The biggest risk factor in the world is high blood pressure, killing 9 million people every year. In the United States, high blood pressure affects 78 million people and gets worse as we age.

High blood pressure is not a natural, inevitable consequence of getting older. Researchers found that whole groups of people who ate a diet centered around whole plant foods experienced lower blood pressures as they aged. What else did they find in these populations? They also had no heart disease.

The Global Burden of Disease study is the most comprehensive and systematic program to analyze the causes of death ever undertaken. It assesses mortality and disability in relation to disease and risk factors. The program’s research helps answer questions like: How many lives could be saved if people cut back on soda? The answer is 299,000. That sounds bad, but it’s not as deadly as bacon, ham or hot dogs. These processed meats cause 800,000 deaths every year, which is five times more people than all illegal drugs combined.

Looking at the research:

Eating more whole grains could save 1.7 millions lives.
Eating more vegetables could save 1.8 million lives.
Eating more nuts and seeds could save 2.5 million lives.
Eating more fruit could save 4.9 million lives.

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