The association between fructose and increased blood pressure is still incompletely defined, because experimental studies have produced dissimilar conclusions. Amplified vasopressor responses to minimal stimuli and differing responses to fructose in peripheral versus central sites may explain the controversy. Fructose induces systemic hypertension through several mechanisms mainly associated with deleterious effects on target organs (kidney, endothelium, heart) exerted by the byproducts of its metabolism, such as uric acid. The kidney is particularly sensitive to the effects of fructose because high loads of this sugar reach renal tissue. In addition, fructose increases reabsorption of salt and water in the small intestine and kidney; thus the combination of salt and fructose has a synergistic effect in the development of hypertension. Clinical and epidemiologic studies have also linked fructose consumption with hypertension. Further studies are warranted in order to understand the role of fructose in the development of hypertension.
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Conflicts of Interest: M Madero: none; SE Perez-Pozo: none; D Jalal: none; RJ Johnson has a book, The Sugar Fix:The High-Fructose Fallout That Is Making You Fat and Sick (Rodale, 2008; Simon and Schuster, 2009), which discusses the potential role of fructose in the obesity epidemic, and he is listed as an inventor on several patent applications related to blocking fructose metabolism and/or lowering uric acid as a means for treating hypertension and metabolic syndrome; LG Sánchez-Lozada: none.
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Madero, M., Perez-Pozo, S.E., Jalal, D. et al. Dietary Fructose and Hypertension. Curr Hypertens Rep 13, 29–35 (2011). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11906-010-0163-x
- Metabolic syndrome
- Uric acid
- Renal disease
- Sodium reabsorption