The Link Between Sodium Intake and Heart Health

High levels of sodium have been linked to increased blood pressure that can lead to heart attacks and strokes. However, health organizations and universities the world over continue to study the relationshipbetween sodium levels and heart health. The New England Journal of Medicine recently published the results of three studies looking at the correlation between sodium and blood pressure. Researchers determined that previous studies that concluded a link between sodium levels and heart disease should be examined further.

Dr. Andrew Mente and his colleagues from McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada, examined therelationship between blood pressure and the level of excretion of sodium through urine. Results of the study showed that 3-6 grams of sodium intake per day was associated with lower risks for heart disease than consuming more or less than 3-6 grams a day.

From the same university, Dr. Martin O’Donnell and his colleagues did a similar study. They examined the intake and excretion of sodium and how it relates to heart disease. Contrary to the results of the first study, Dr. O’Donnell found that excretion of 5 grams and above per day was associated with a greater chance of heart disease. In addition, it associated a modest connection between heart disease and 3-5 grams of sodium excretion per day, and no significant connection between heart disease and 3 grams or less of sodium excretion per day.

The last study conducted by Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian and his colleagues at Tufts University in Boston examined data taken from surveys on sodium intake determined by excretion and diet from 66 countries. The results of this study associated the death of 1.65 million from heart disease in 2010 with sodium intake above 2 grams per day.

To sum it all up, the exact relation between sodium intake and heart disease is more complicated than previously thought–all the studies present contradictory results to each other. Researchers understand that there is a need for high-quality evidence to describe the correlation between low and high sodium diets and heart disease before any solid conclusions can be drawn.
To learn more about how foods can affect your heart health, as well as more about our products such as a telemetry unit or Holter monitor, contact the professionals at ReactDx Inc. today. What do you think is a healthy sodium intake? How do you regulate the amount of sodium in your diet? Share this post and join the conversation.

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