Consuming low amounts of sodium can increase the risk of heart disease, stroke and death.
It has been widely believed that consuming too much salt is not good for health. But recently, evidences have been mounting against restricted use of salt and a new research also suggests that low salt diets may not benefit health; in fact, they may lead to serious health consequences.
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In the large-scale study, researchers involved more than 130,000 people from 49 countries and specifically looked at the relationship between salt intake and risk of heart disease and mortality. They found that low-salt intake is linked to increased risk of heart disease and death regardless of whether people have high blood pressure.
According to study, people with high blood pressure or hypertension are the only ones who need to cut back high levels of salt consumption.
“These are extremely important findings for those who are suffering from high blood pressure. While our data highlights the importance of reducing high salt intake in people with hypertension, it does not support reducing salt intake to low levels.” Principal investigator Andrew Mente of Population Health Research Institute (PHRI) said.
Current guidelines suggest that adults and children aged 14 years and over should limit sodium to less than 2,300 milligrams a day and children younger should consume even less, indicating higher salt consumption can be dangerous to health.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says. “Most of the sodium we consume is in the form of salt and the vast majority of sodium we consume is in proceed and restaurant foods. Your body needs a small amount of sodium to work properly, but too much sodium is bad for your health.”
But new research suggests that consuming salt below than a certain limit could also prove harmful for health. According to study, less than 3 grams per day salt intake carries health risks regardless of a person’s blood pressure level.
“Low sodium intake reduces blood pressure modestly, compared to average intake, but low sodium intake also has other effects, including adverse elevations of certain hormones which may outweigh any benefits,” Mente said. “The key question is not whether blood pressure is lower with very low salt intake, instead whether it improves health.”
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The new study not only adds to researchers understating of relationship between salt intake and health but challenges the appropriateness of current guidelines that recommends people to consume low amounts of salt