The Sound Of Settled Science

| 30 Comments

Hold the consensus.

Consuming fewer than 2,500 milligrams of sodium daily is actually associated with higher blood pressure, according to the Framingham Offspring Study report, given today. The American Heart Association recommends consuming no more than 2,300 milligrams of sodium daily, equal to a teaspoon of ordinary iodized table salt.

High blood pressure is a known risk factor for heart disease and stroke. Hence, lowering salt intake is supposed to lower blood pressure and thus reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke. But the study found that supposition to be unfounded.

Moreover, the lowest blood pressure was recorded by those who consumed 4,000 milligrams or more a day -- amounts considered dangerously high by medical authorities such as the American Heart Association.


30 Comments

Salt is the most easily expelled substance. I have never regarded it as harmful. So fat and salt are now both off the bad list. Smokes should be next, perhaps nearly a million years sitting around a fire has made that okay as well. Evolution is strong medicine

Naturally occurring fats like animal fat is good for us in moderation. Artificial fats like margarine and hydrogenated oils aka. trans-fats are not good for us.

Artificial trans fats (or trans fatty acids) are created in an industrial process that adds hydrogen to liquid vegetable oils to make them more solid. The primary dietary source for trans fats in processed food is “partially hydrogenated oils."

Too much sodium is bad for people that have trouble from retaining too much water. It does increase their blood pressure.

Normal healthy people do not have that problem. But the "experts" are too stupid and lazy to understand and explain the difference. They think because 20% of the population has trouble with sodium sensitivity, the ONLY possible solution is, BAN THE SALTS!!!! Because if they don't have everyone on a low sodium diet, one or two people with high blood pressure because of salt will keep ingesting too much salt.

These are the same people that told us polyunsaturated fat was good! Carbohydrates help keep weight down! Eggs are Bad!

We are being ruled over by our inferiors.

Yes, we are ruled by our inferiors. Don't expect a change. The people who run this site have dedicated threads toward sports.
Sports are all about misdirection by the Rulers to distract us from recognizing how BADLY we are being ruled.

I participate in sports because they are good for my body and soul. I don't think bad political leadership has ever entered into it.

Sports are all about misdirection by the Rulers to distract us from recognizing how BADLY we are being ruled.

“Two things only the people anxiously desire — bread and circuses.” The government kept the Roman populace happy by distributing free food and staging huge spectacles.

Junk food isn't totally free, however it's subsidized to be significantly cheaper than nutritious food. The ginormous sports spectacles speak for themselves.

Umm sure. Badness politically has nothing to do with your view of anything or sports or the Olympic games or international hockey or... May you prosper and never have reality intrude upon your general non-partisan existence./
nanoo nanoo...forget that SPORTS were invented in ancient Greece to train soldiers to be the best they can be to KILL the enemies of Greece.

whatever you are smoking, I could use a steady supply of 'cause I'm over 50 and life is harder than it used to be...

There is a big difference between personal participation in amateur/hobby sports, and the vicarious spectacle of professional sports.

If you aren't actually doing it yourself, it IS vicarious. Unless you ignore it altogether, in which case you can't possibly participate.
(not just my personal definition of vicarious, maybe you should look it up)

I participate in sports, I don't watch them. And I think sports have been around since before ancient Greece.

Oh FFS! Did I struggle for 25 years to keep my salt intake from going above 2500 mg for nothing? Also, I have been on BP pills for the last 20 years as well.

Hi all,

I'm the reporter who wrote the article. Thank you for reading and thanks to Kate for linking. It's gratifying that people cared enough to read the article. I had feared it was too long and contained too much data to sustain interest. Good to know there's people interested in more than the latest gossip about vacuous Hollywood celebrities.

Cheers,

Bradley

Great article thee Bradley. I just sent it to my nurse daughter and will give it to my wife to read when she wakes up. She has a situation that by having Miniers (sp) disease in one ear and has to watch excessive liquid intake, while at the same time having a low sodium level, she is also taking a salt pill.

I also recall the industrial plants in Ontario in the past had salt pill stations at various locations in the plant.

Canuckguy, ditto here.

I have a very good friend who is a bit of an unhinged crazy alternative health junkie. However, out of all the crazy rantings he lays on me ... there is one ... that I truly believe (based on the biological evidence). That hydrogenated fats (margarine) are very dangerous things. I ONLY use butter. Sweet cream (unsalted) butter. I suppose I am one of the lucky ones who naturally produces "good" cholesterol, so none of my butter eating has caused my cholesterol to spike (although THAT health orthodoxy is being exposed as overwrought). Butter, butter, butter ... in cooking mmmmm. "My people" ... the French ... sure as hell know what to do with sweet cream butter ... mmmmmm. I have probably been genetically programmed to consume butter with no ill effect (except caloric density).

Salt ? I avoid prepared foods (loaded with salt) and crisps ... and use it judiciously in cooking. But only for reasons of TASTE (never overwhelming natural flavors). And I avoid most food and health fads which usually have more to do with "religious fervor" than hard science.

You should participate in the shooting sports.

Good exercise and scares the crap out of lib/progs. Win/win!

To the best of my knowledge, the evidence that increased salt intake significantly increases the risk of stroke is still pretty solid. Perhaps you could do a follow up on this issue?

Hi Daniel,

I will look into that. Thank you for the suggestion.

Cheers,

Bradley

Daniel, I should have waited! I found this article that indicates risk of stroke is heightened in those with high blood pressure:
http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/310447.php


"Published in The Lancet, the study found that low salt, or sodium, intake may raise the risk of heart attack, stroke, and death, compared with an average salt intake.

Lead author Andrew Mente, of the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine at McMaster University in Canada, and colleagues say their results indicate only people with high blood pressure (hypertension) who have a high salt intake should reduce their salt consumption.

Furthermore, the researchers suggest current recommendations for daily salt consumption may be set too low."

Of course, one study on its own has limited value. But taken into consideration with other studies, it provides more evidence that setting one-size-fits-all standards for sodium consumption is unjustified, when we can assess blood pressure response to sodium intake on an individual level.


Holy jumping Jesus, we are dialoging with an actual journalist.

@Ken "had salt pill stations "
Yup, I remember those when I worked(like a dog) at a mine in the late 60's. Sweated buckets.

My only encounter with the salt tablets was with the Armed Forces. We officers were to keep in mind that the men might be in need of a salt tablet before and or after a day of physical exercise on a hot day. I would simply take the bottle of pills and pass it to an NCO and tell him to distribute them to anyone who wanted one. Most took the pills when offered I know I did. However as someone recently diagnosed with high BP I did some cursory research and almost every article said to cut down on my salt intake. I haven't uses=d salt for decades so that was ruled out and then the articles said to stop drinking alcohol which I did 35 years ago. Get some exercise which I do a lot of and have since I was a kid. Oh well the little pills they gave work. Sometimes too well.

I would be very interested to see some actual science journalism on this particular issue (salt consumption) I suspect that it's either a Goldilocks problem (not too much, not too little) or a sickle cell anemia problem (choose how you want to die).

Unfortunately, experience tells me not to trust these studies any more than I would the old ones.

Oh, for a scientific community that practiced the scientific method.

Yeah, as does most things. I've come to expect it.

Yeah, I never got into the margarine or hydrogenated oil thing either. I eat what my grandparents ate, butter and pig-fat have always been my cooking fats, and olive oil for low temperature use. My BP is 115/75, and I am also one of the lucky ones who naturally produces "good" cholesterol, while the "bad" cholesterol is below healthy minimums. The doc says this is excellent for a septuagenarian so I'll just keep cooking what I enjoy eating which includes using salt in moderation to enhance flavor.

Always have, just never considered it 'sport'.

IIRC, one of the factors that was rarely addressed in the demonizing of salt was the role of Potassium. People who were potassium deficient tended to react very strongly to the amount of salt in their diet, and in their case extra salt did push their blood pressure up substantially.

Canuckguy,

Some of us journalists are friendly critters. ;-)

Daniel,

There is good science on salt, but it has limitations. Humans aren't going to agree to spend years in a lab being given diets they have no control over. Gary Taubes has done a lot of good work on explaining the evidence we do have.

My wife is Malaysian and they consume vast quantities of salt, her BP spiked badly and she had to go to emerg several times, the medicines they put her on caused even more side effects. So she cut her salt right back to the recommended intake (600mg as I recall?) and she quickly recovered. Now she manages her salt intake and is completely off any medication. Heart diseases and blood pressure illnesses are a major killer in SE Asia.

Leave a comment

Archives

October 2017

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 9 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20 21
22 23 24 25 26 27 28
29 30 31        

Recent Comments

  • colin: My wife is Malaysian and they consume vast quantities of read more
  • Bradley J. Fikes: Daniel, There is good science on salt, but it has read more
  • Bradley J. Fikes: Canuckguy, Some of us journalists are friendly critters. ;-) read more
  • DaveK: IIRC, one of the factors that was rarely addressed in read more
  • John Galt: Always have, just never considered it 'sport'. read more
  • John Galt: Yeah, I never got into the margarine or hydrogenated oil read more
  • John Galt: Yeah, as does most things. I've come to expect it. read more
  • Alyric: Unfortunately, experience tells me not to trust these studies any read more
  • Daniel Ream: I would be very interested to see some actual science read more
  • Joe: My only encounter with the salt tablets was with the read more