A pinch more is not healthy. People who add salt to their plate are at increased risk of dying prematurely from any cause According to a study of more than 500,000 people, published in the European journal of the heart.
The work carried out by Lu Qi, of Tulane University New Orleans School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine (United States) concluded that Compared to those who never or rarely added this seasoning, those who always did had a 28% increased risk of dying prematurely.
A) Yes, 3% of the general population between the ages of 40 and 69 die prematurely. The fact of always seasoning with excess salt in food observed in this study suggests that 1% may die prematurely in this age group.
The investigation found lower life expectancy in people who always added salt compared to those who never or rarely added it. At age 50, between 1.5 and 2.28 years had been reduced in the life expectancy of women and men, respectively.
In this direction, Qi noted that “as far as I know, our study is the first to assess the relationship between the addition of salt to food and premature death. On the other hand, he indicated that this work “provides new evidence to support recommendations to change eating behaviors for better health.”
“Even a modest reduction in sodium intake, adding less or no salt to foods at the table, is likely to be beneficial especially when it is reached in the general population,” the expert said.
Salt increases the risk of diseases such as cancer, high blood pressure and stroke, its consumption should be less than 5 grams per day, according to World Health Organization (WHO). However, assessing total sodium intake is difficult because many foods, in particular those prepared and processed, they have high levels before they hit the table. Studies that assess salt intake through urine tests often take only one sample and therefore, they do not necessarily reflect normal behavior.
However, if foods high in salt tend to go accompanied by products rich in potassium, such as fruits and vegetables, the results are positive. We know that this element protects against the risk of heart disease and metabolic diseases such as diabetes, while sodium increases the risk of diseases such as cancer, high blood pressure and stroke.
The researchers chose to examine whether or not people added salt to their food at the table, regardless of the salt added during cooking. “Adding seasoning to food at the table is a common behavior that is directly related to an individual’s long-term preference for saltiness and habitual sodium intake.”, stress Qi.
And he added: “In the Western diet, adding an extra pinch of salt accounts for 6-20% of total sodium intake and provides a unique way to assess the association between usual intake and risk of death.”
In the work, the data of 501,379 people who participated in the study of British Biobank (UKBB). Among the main results, it was found that the risks tended to be slightly reduced in people who consumed the highest amounts of fruits and vegetables; although these results are not statistically significant.
“It didn’t surprise us, because vegetables are an important source of potassium, with protective effects and are associated with a lower risk of premature death“said the specialist.
Qi pointed out that “because our study is the first to demonstrate a relationship between excess salt in food and mortality, further studies are needed to validate the results before making recommendations”.
In this sense, in a editorial accompanying the articlethe teacher Annika Rosengren, researcher and professor of medicine at Sahlgrenska Academy of the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, which did not participate in the research, wrote that the net effect of a drastic reduction in salt intake for individuals remains controversial.
“Given various indications that a very low sodium intake may not be beneficial or even harmful, it is important to distinguish between individual recommendations and actions at the population level,” said Rosengren.
“The obvious, evidence-based strategy concerning the prevention of cardiovascular disease in individuals is the early detection and treatment of hypertension, including lifestyle changes, while societal level salt reduction strategies will reduce average blood pressure levels in the population, which will reduce the number of people with hypertension,” he concluded.