The connection between table salt in diet and blood pressure has been known for a long time. Many studies have shown that people who eat more salt are more likely to suffer from hypertension, and those who eat less salt less often. In the new work, the scientists decided to get more accurate data.
Scientists analyzed 85 studies, followed by participants for up to three years. They found that any – even small – reduction in the amount of sodium in the diet led to a decrease in blood pressure. At the same time, this effect was practically “limitless”: the less salt people consumed, the lower the pressure became.
The study showed that a decrease in the amount of sodium in the diet for every 2.3 grams per day leads to a decrease in systolic (upper) blood pressure by 5.6 millimeters of mercury, and diastolic diastolic (lower) – by 2.3.
“We found that cutting sodium in the diet was beneficial for people with normal blood pressure who are already low in salt,” said Dr. Marco Vinceti, professor at the Reggio Emilia School of Medicine and lead author of the study.
Vincheti believes the new data supports the American Heart Association’s recommendation: “Less is more. Even when consuming less than 1.5 grams of salt, there is a decrease in blood pressure, ”he said.
Scientists point out that in order to reduce the amount of sodium in the diet, the diet needs to be made healthier. One of the diets designed to lower blood pressure is the DASH diet (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension – English, a dietary approach to ending hypertension). Its main components are fruits, vegetables, fish, poultry, legumes, nuts. It is recommended to limit red meat, sweets and fatty foods as much as possible.
“Simply reducing the amount of salt in the diet had an effect in the study, no doubt about it. But it seems that if you improve your diet in general, the effect will increase, ”said Dr. James Brian Byrd of the University of Michingan School of Medicine.