NEW YORK (Reuters Health) – Recent low-carbohydrate diets, which are very popular, increase the risk of irregular heart rhythms associated with strokes, a new study at Sun Yat-sen University of China suggests. The results show that people who get a low daily calorie intake of carbohydrates such as grains, fruits and starchy vegetables are more likely to develop heart rhythm disorders, known as atrial fibrillation.
The study analyzed the health records of more than 13,000 people over more than two decades, in the largest assessment of the relationship between carbohydrate intake and atrial fibrillation, one of the most common heart problems, heart palpitations, dizziness, exhaustion and heart failure.
“The long-term effect of reducing carbohydrates in the diet is still controversial, especially with regard to its effect on cardiovascular disease,” said study author Dr Xiaodong Zhuang,
“Given the potential impact on arrhythmia, our study suggests caution should be exercised by reducing the proportion of carbohydrates to reduce weight”
These findings are an integral part of previous studies, many of which linked low-carbohydrate diets to an increased risk of death, the Daily Mail reported.