Many studies have been conducted on the effects of salt consumption. Until now, the prevailing assumption on the matter was that too much salt is no good. This theory came from an old study that proved that people with hypertension who consumed more than seven grams of sodium a day had significantly greater rates of cardiac problems and death than those who consumed four to five grams of salt a day.
The problem with the outcome of this study though is that readers have taken it to mean that consuming excessive amounts of salt has negative effects on everyone. They’ve generalized the results that were observed on a select group of extreme case people and adopted the advice for people who have normal blood pressure as well.
A new study recently released, has proven that this is simply not the case. For those of us with normal blood pressure, consuming more than seven grams of sodium a day actually has no increased risk compared with those who consume four to five grams a day.
Low sodium may not be the way to go
Even more so, there is a growing body of evidence that shows the push for very low sodium levels may be doing more harm than good. People with hypertension who consumed less than three grams of sodium a day had a higher risk of bad outcomes than those who consumed four to five grams. They even had worse outcomes than people who consumed more than seven grams. An increased risk was also seen in those with normal blood pressure who consumed less than three grams a day.
So how much is just right?
With all this new evidence, it is perplexing why organizations like the Food and Drug Administration still recommends we consume less than 2.3 grams of sodium a day. The fact of the matter is that 95% of people in the world consumer more than three grams of sodium a day and that seems to be perfectly fine.