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High Salt Intake Damages Blood vessels, Causes High Blood Pressure


High Salt Intake Damages Blood vessels, Causes High Blood Pressure

(epharmanews)- People who suffer from a type of blood cell damage and consume a lot of salt or salty food for several years are at high risk of developing high blood pressure, according to research reported in the American Heart Association journal Circulation.

This research hints at the presence of a “sodium amplification loop” in which eating too much salt for a long time damages blood vessels, leading to a greater chance of developing high blood pressure if the high-salt diet is continued.

Although researchers did not assess the cause-and-effect relationship between salt intake and high blood pressure, the results of this study “add to the considerable evidence that a diet heavy on salt is closely linked to high blood pressure,” said John Forman, M.D., lead author of the study and a nephrologist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston, Massachusetts.

“In addition, this study reinforces guidelines backed by the American Heart Association and other professional organizations that recommend reducing salt consumption to minimize the risk of developing high blood pressure,” Forman said.

In an observational study, researchers tracked sodium intake of 5,556 men and women from the general population of Groningen, Netherlands. They assessed sodium intake by collecting multiple 24-hour urine samples, which is considered the optimal method to measure sodium intake.

After that they analyzed the association between sodium consumption and blood levels of uric acid and albumin in the urine — both markers of blood vessel damage — in participants not taking high blood pressure medicine.

Higher sodium intake was associated with increasing levels of uric acid and albumin over time. Researchers found that the risk of developing high blood pressure was greater if the levels of those markers and the dietary salt intake were high. Participants eating the most amount of sodium (about 6,200 mg/d) were 21 percent more likely to develop high blood pressure in comparison with those eating the least (about 2,200 milligrams a day). However, those who had high uric acid levels and ate the most salt were 32 percent more likely to develop high blood pressure while those with high urine albumin levels and highest salt intake were 86 percent more likely to develop high blood pressure.

It is believed that a high-salt diet is responsible for 20 percent to 40 percent of all cases of high blood pressure in the United States.

Because the study involved only European Caucasians, the results should be replicated in Hispanics, African-Americans and others in the United States; however, other researchers have found a link between a high-salt diet and high blood pressure in these other populations, Forman said.


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Prepared by: Abdullatief Janat


Source :

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