Double the Salt for a Healthy Heart?

Dear Living Well Daily Reader,

To salt or not to salt?

That is the ultimate blood pressure question.

Well, at least it has been for the last handful of decades. And it’s been the cause of great confusion for folks who want to take care of their hearts.

Fortunately, researchers have pinpointed the exact amount of salt you should be eating every day to keep a healthy heart.

It’s a lot more than you think… and if you’re not getting enough salt, you could actually be putting your life in danger.

Current Dietary Guidelines for Americans suggest you should consume less than 2.3 g of salt daily.

But now it looks like that’s way, way off.

The latest research indicates that eating double this amount, or 4–5 g of salt every day, is the sweet spot for heart health.

And if you’re getting much less than that, you may be doing permanent damage to your health.

Researchers studied the health data of over 133,000 people for four years. During the study, researchers tracked blood pressure readings and estimated sodium consumption.

Turns out that people without high blood pressure who consumed less than 3 grams of salt daily were a whopping 26 percent more likely to die or suffer from heart disease and stroke than folks who ate 4–5 g daily.

And get this – if you already have high blood pressure, eating less than 3 g of salt a day is actually 34 percent more dangerous for your health than eating more than 7 g a day.

It’s clear we’ve all been getting some pretty shoddy salt advice. But researchers say 4–5 g a day should be the new safe standard.

So be sure to dust off those salt shakers and use them liberally this weekend to get that perfect 4–5 g serving of salt.

Live well,

Natalie Moore
Managing editor, Living Well Daily

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[1] GET THE FACTS: Sodium and the Dietary Guidelines

[2] Associations of urinary sodium excretion with cardiovascular events in individuals with and without hypertension: a pooled analysis of data from four studies


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