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Effects of excess sucrose ingestion on the life span of hypertensive rats (SHR)


Because dietary intake of sucrose may influence life span, we assigned 75 Spontaneously Hypertensive Rats (SHR) to be fed 5 diets, i.e., 15 rats were fed each diet. The control diet (I) derived near equal calories from sucrose, proteins, and fats. Diets II and III derived the majority of calories from sucrose with a decrease in calories from proteins (II) and fats (III) respectively. The last 2 diets were relatively low in sucrose with a higher percentage of calories from proteins (IV) and fats (V) respectively. Rats consuming the diets high in sucrose (II, III) had the shortest mean life span. Differences in renal function did not explain the shortened life span. Blood pressures in SHR ingesting high sucrose (II, III) were significantly higher, and longevity correlated with the mean BP of SHR. At post mortem, the majority of SHR showed enlarged hearts and pleural effusions. We conclude that the diets high in sucrose produced higher blood pressures with earlier congestive heart failure which is, at least in part, responsible for the shortened life span.

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Preuss, H.G., el Zein, M., Areas, J.L. et al. Effects of excess sucrose ingestion on the life span of hypertensive rats (SHR). Geriatric Nephrol Urol 1, 13–20 (1991).

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