Washington Post declares that unknown to many shoppers urged to buy foods that are “low sodium” and “low salt,” this longstanding warning has come under assault by scientists who say that typical American salt consumption is without risk.
“More scientists doubt salt is as bad for you as the government says” and that there is no longer any valid basis for the current salt guidelines,” said Andrew Mente, a professor at McMaster University in Ontario and one of the researchers involved in a major study published last year by the New England Journal of Medicine. “So why are we still scaring people about salt?”
According to TIME MAGAZINE scientists have argued that public-health messaging encouraging people to significantly cut their sodium and salt consumption is overblown or missing the point—that we should focus less on the salt in the shaker and instead encourage people to eat more whole and non-processed food, since most processed food is full of sodium and since most whole foods contain negligible amounts of naturally occurring sodium.
Sodium has long been labeled the blood-pressure bogeyman. But are we giving salt a fair shake?
Our bodies need salt, but if we consume it in excess, we increase our risk for hypertension, which can ultimately lead to heart disease. The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends consuming less than 1,500 mg of sodium per day. Here’s what that looks like:
1/4 teaspoon salt = 575 mg sodium 1/2 teaspoon salt = 1,150 mg sodium 3/4 teaspoon salt = 1,725 mg sodium 1 teaspoon salt = 2,300 mg sodium
Most waters have a a low sodium content well below 100mg/l so drinking even a coupler of liters of water will only slightly contribute to the daily doses of Sodium required for the human body. Un-processed water can be a very good vector for complex minerals and trace elements in its natural state.
"There is also a call for moderation as one of the studies had a particularly interesting finding, showing that people who consumed more than 6,000 mg a day and people who consumed less than 3,000 a day had a greater risk of cardiovascular events and mortality. People consuming a moderate amount in the 3,000-6,000 mg range had the lowest number of heart-related events. (The AHA limit—1,500 mg of sodium—is half the lower-limit of what the moderate group consumed.). Recently, evidence has been mounting against universal salt restriction guidelines. A low-salt diet may cause serious health consequences and higher overall mortality, especially in the presence of certain chronic health conditions and lifestyle factors. In this article, I will discuss scientific evidence that contradicts salt restriction recommendations, as well as potential health risks of consuming a diet too low in salt."
Scientific America declares that it is "Time to End the War on Salt and the sodium regulations as a zealous drive by politicians to limit our salt intake has little basis in science. A meta-analysis of seven studies involving a total of 6,250 subjects in the American Journal of Hypertension found no strong evidence that cutting salt intake reduces the risk for heart attacks, strokes or death in people with normal or high blood pressure. In May European researchers publishing in the Journal of the American Medical Association reported that the less sodium that study subjects excreted in their urine—an excellent measure of prior consumption—the greater their risk was of dying from heart disease. These findings call into question the common wisdom that excess salt is bad for you, but the evidence linking salt to heart disease has always been tenuous".
Scientific American: It's Time to End the War on Salt
Natural vs. Processed:
Natural Salt is 85 Percent Sodium Chloride and Processed Salt is 98 Percent. Ordinary table salt undergoes a great deal of processing between the factory and your grocer. It is approximately 97.5 percent sodium chloride and 2.5 percent chemicals such as iodine and moisture absorbents, dried at over 1,200 degrees Fahrenheit. This high heat alters the natural chemical structure of the salt. By contrast, unrefined salt is 84 percent sodium chloride and 16 percent other naturally occurring minerals, including many trace minerals like silicon, phosphorous and vanadium. If you want your body to function properly, you need a balanced salt, complete with all-natural elements and free of pollutants. I will speak more about my favorite natural salt a bit later. The important point is, today's ordinary table salt has nothing in common with natural sea salt.
Bottled water contains unprocessed, natural salt. Fast food, sodas contain processed salt.
Natural Mineral-rich Waters and the Metabolic Syndrome Within the scope of beneficial effects in cardiovascular disease and MetSyn prevention, there are several publications showing that the ingestion of mineral waters with sodium bicarbonate is beneficial in lowering cardiovascular risk factors, including blood pressure. Presently, with the increase in MetSyn and type 2 diabetes mellitus, associated with a high consumption of calorie-rich and micronutrient-poor foods, ingestion of natural mineral-rich waters may be beneficial. This effect will be even greater if ingestion of sweetened beverages is replaced by natural mineral-rich waters