Baking powder is a common ingredient in many baked goods, such as cakes, muffins, and biscuits.
It helps the dough rise and creates a light and fluffy texture.
But is baking powder bad for your heart?
In this blog post, we’ll explore the relationship between baking powder and heart health, examining the pros and cons to help you make informed choices for a healthier lifestyle.
What is Baking Powder?
Baking powder is a type of chemical leavener, meaning that it generates gas during the cooking process to raise baked goods.
It is made from a mixture of baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) and an acid, usually cream of tartar or sodium aluminum sulfate.
Baking powder also contains cornstarch or another starch to prevent clumping and moisture absorption.
Baking powder requires only moisture for the chemical reaction to occur. Most of the baking powder sold in stores is called “double-acting”, indicating that it produces gas in two stages: first when it is mixed with liquid, and second when it is heated.
Baking Powder and Sodium
One of the primary concerns about baking powder is its sodium content.
Baking soda, a key component of baking powder, is high in sodium.
Excessive sodium intake has been linked to high blood pressure, a major risk factor for heart disease.
How Does Baking Powder Affect Your Heart?
Baking powder itself has very few calories and negligible amounts of fat, protein, and carbs.
One teaspoon (4.6 grams) of baking powder has only 2.4 calories and 1.1 grams of carbs.
However, baking powder can cause some adverse effects on your heart, such as:
#1 High Blood Pressure
Baking powder contains sodium, which can increase your blood pressure if you consume too much.
High blood pressure can damage your arteries and increase your risk of heart disease, stroke, and kidney failure.
#2 Heart Arrhythmias
Baking powder can also affect your heart rhythm if you overdose on it.
One 2016 case study notes that overdosing on baking soda has caused heart arrhythmias for some people.
There have also been cases of baking soda overdoses causing cardiac arrest.
#3 Lactic Acidosis
Baking powder can also increase the pH level of your blood and body fluids, making them more alkaline than normal.
This can cause lactic acidosis, a condition that occurs when there is too much lactic acid in the blood.
Lactic acidosis can affect your breathing, heart rate, muscle function, and nervous system. It can also be fatal if not treated promptly.
#4 Aluminum Controversy
Some baking powders contain aluminum, and there has been debate about its potential link to heart disease.
However, current research does not provide conclusive evidence of this association.
How Can You Use Baking Powder Safely?
Baking powder is generally safe to use in moderation, but using too much can cause some adverse effects on your heart.
To avoid these risks, you should follow these tips:
Also, read Is Baking Powder Bad for Weight Loss?
Baking powder is a common ingredient in many baked goods that helps them rise and creates a light and fluffy texture.
In conclusion, baking powder, when used in moderation, is unlikely to have a significant negative impact on heart health.
The key is to be mindful of your overall sodium intake and make informed choices.
If you have specific health concerns or conditions, it’s advisable to consult with a healthcare professional for personalized advice.
So, go ahead, enjoy your favorite baked treats, and savor the delightful moments they bring to your life.
The Bottom Line
We hope this blog post has given you some useful information and insights about baking power and its effect on heart health, and helped you make an informed decision about whether to use them or not.
If you have any comments or questions, please feel free to share them below.
Thank you for reading and good luck.