Phosphorus in our diet: A problem or a marker for a bad diet?

  • Phosphorus is found in a wide variety of foods, both processed and unprocessedPhosphorus
  • It is found in meats, nuts, seeds,, whole grains, seafood, and poultry.
  • Additives in the form of phosphates are another form of phosphorus that we ingest. The inorganic form like this is readily absorbed. They are used as leavening agents, stabilizers, flavor enhancers, emulsifiers, and moisture binders in many food products.
  • Sodas, in particular, Colas are sources of phosphates.
  • Basically any processed food is generally filled with extra phosphorus.
  • We need Phosphorus for energy metabolism, regulating calcium, genetic information, and cell maintenance.
  • Too much phosphorus can increase the risk of cardiovascular events, bone loss, and kidney failure.
  • The RDA is 700 mg a day. Amounts over 1400 mg a day are associated with increased risk of mortality even in healthy people.
  • The type of food and it’s phosphorus load may play a role in the extent of problems. Phosphorus in an inorganic form is absorbed quickly and is present in processed food . This along with phosphorus present in meat products seems to pose an increased risk. In milk and dairy products, which have calcium and phosphorus in large amounts, there is not as much danger. In fact, dairy products lower high blood pressure.
  • Colas contain a lot of phosphorus, and this may result in displacement of calcium in the body, resulting in low bone density and fractures.
  • High phosphorus intake may increase risk for osteoporosis.
  • A hormone, FGF-23 may be increased in patient who consume a lot of phosphorus. This hormone  may cause cardiovascular problems such as calcification of the arteries and stiffening of the arteries.
  • Excess phosphorus may be associated with cancer and type 2 diabetes risk.
  • In short, decrease your processed food intake, cola consumption, and consider following the DASH diet (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension)
Dash Diet Pyramid
Dash Diet Pyramid

One thought on “Phosphorus in our diet: A problem or a marker for a bad diet?”

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