Case Report: Does Salt Raise Blood Pressure?

 

Abstract

The world average sodium intake is 2600 to 4800mg a day. This is not consistent with the World Health Organization’s recommendations of less than 2000mg a day.[1,2] Salt does not raise blood pressure in most people.[1,2] Lowering salt intake may result in worse health.[1,3] Salt intake may raise blood pressure in a small number of salt sensitive people.[1]

Methods

Take a baseline blood pressure while consuming 720mg sodium a day from whole plant foods. Starting with ¼ tsp, 1.5 grams, 552mg sodium double this amount each day until the total added salt is around 1 tsp, 6g, 2208mg sodium bringing the total to 2720mg of sodium a day. Salt is consumed with approximately 5 quarts or 16 cups (US imperial) of light vegetable broth between the hours of 6am and 12pm each day.

Baseline Blood Pressure
Sodium at 720mg

2019-11-04 — 11:44am – 109 sys mmHg / 74 dia mmHg – 54 pulse
2019-11-04 — 12:53pm – 108 sys mmHg / 77 dia mmHg – 48 pulse
2019-11-04 — 01:19pm – 113 sys mmHg / 81 dia mmHg – 45 pulse
2019-11-04 — 01:25pm – 106 sys mmHg / 77 dia mmHg – 47 pulse
2019-11-04 — 01:50pm – 111 sys mmHg / 70 dia mmHg – 45 pulse
2019-11-04 — 01:52pm – 109 sys mmHg / 71 dia mmHg – 46 pulse
2019-11-04 — 02:08pm – 108 sys mmHg / 78 dia mmHg – 45 pulse
2019-11-04 — 02:09pm – 110 sys mmHg / 74 dia mmHg – 46 pulse
2019-11-04 — 02:11pm – 107 sys mmHg / 70 dia mmHg – 47 pulse
2019-11-04 — 02:12pm – 111 sys mmHg / 75 dia mmHg – 47 pulse

Average Baseline

108.6 SYS mmHg / 74.7 DIA mmHg – 47 pulse

Blood Pressure – Day 1
Removal of ¾ cup of Almond Milk a day from diet accounted for a 130mg decrease in sodium intake. Total sodium level is at 1154mg.
Salt Intake at 1/4 tsp, 1.5 grams, 552mg sodium
2019-11-05 — 12:00pm – 110 sys mmHg / 74 dia mmHg – 53 pulse
2019-11-05 — 12:10pm – 109 sys mmHg / 74 dia mmHg – 53 pulse
2019-11-05 — 12:30pm – 107 sys mmHg / 74 dia mmHg – 51 pulse
2019-11-05 — 01:13pm – 108 sys mmHg / 75 dia mmHg – 49 pulse
2019-11-05 — 02:40pm – 111 sys mmHg / 75 dia mmHg – 45 pulse
2019-11-05 — 04:07pm – 112 sys mmHg / 78 dia mmHg – 44 pulse
2019-11-05 — 04:08pm – 111 sys mmHg / 78 dia mmHg – 43 pulse
2019-11-05 — 04:10pm – 113 sys mmHg / 76 dia mmHg – 43 pulse
2019-11-05 — 04:10pm – 111 sys mmHg / 76 dia mmHg – 42 pulse
2019-11-05 — 04:16pm – 111 sys mmHg / 77 dia mmHg – 44 pulse

Average

110.3 SYS mmHg / 75.5 DIA mmHg – 46.7 pulse

Blood Pressure – Day 2
Total sodium level is at 1706mg
Salt Intake at 1/2 tsp, 3 grams, 1104mg sodium
2019-11-06 — 11:36am – 108 sys mmHg / 75 dia mmHg – 50 pulse
2019-11-06 — 11:39am – 108 sys mmHg / 75 dia mmHg – 49 pulse
2019-11-06 — 11:45am – 110 sys mmHg / 78 dia mmHg – 49 pulse
2019-11-06 — 11:48am – 108 sys mmHg / 75 dia mmHg – 50 pulse
2019-11-06 — 11:52am – 110 sys mmHg / 76 dia mmHg – 50 pulse
2019-11-06 — 11:55am – 105 sys mmHg / 74 dia mmHg – 49 pulse
2019-11-06 — 12:00pm – 109 sys mmHg / 78 dia mmHg – 48 pulse
2019-11-06 — 12:04pm – 107 sys mmHg / 74 dia mmHg – 48 pulse
2019-11-06 — 12:05pm – 105 sys mmHg / 71 dia mmHg – 50 pulse
2019-11-06 — 12:08pm – 110 sys mmHg / 71 dia mmHg – 49 pulse
2019-11-06 — 12:09pm – 104 sys mmHg / 69 dia mmHg – 49 pulse
2019-11-06 — 12:11pm – 106 sys mmHg / 69 dia mmHg – 50 pulse
2019-11-06 — 12:15pm – 108 sys mmHg / 71 dia mmHg – 49 pulse
2019-11-06 — 12:20pm – 108 sys mmHg / 73 dia mmHg – 47 pulse
2019-11-06 — 12:21pm – 107 sys mmHg / 71 dia mmHg – 48 pulse
2019-11-06 — 12:23pm – 104 sys mmHg / 68 dia mmHg – 49 pulse
2019-11-06 — 12:25pm – 101 sys mmHg / 68 dia mmHg – 48 pulse
2019-11-06 — 12:31pm – 109 sys mmHg / 69 dia mmHg – 43 pulse
2019-11-06 — 12:33pm – 104 sys mmHg / 67 dia mmHg – 46 pulse
2019-11-06 — 12:37pm – 108 sys mmHg / 70 dia mmHg – 44 pulse
2019-11-06 — 12:40pm – 101 sys mmHg / 62 dia mmHg – 40 pulse
2019-11-06 — 12:46pm – 100 sys mmHg / 67 dia mmHg – 48 pulse

Average

106.3 SYS mmHg / 71.4 DIA mmHg – 47.8 pulse

Blood Pressure – Day 3
Total sodium level is at 2764mg
Salt Intake at 1 tsp, 6 grams, 2208mg sodium
2019-11-08 — 12:22pm – 111 sys mmHg / 75 dia mmHg – 44 pulse
2019-11-08 — 12:24pm – 109 sys mmHg / 74 dia mmHg – 45 pulse
2019-11-08 — 12:28pm – 105 sys mmHg / 75 dia mmHg – 46 pulse
2019-11-08 — 12:34pm – 110 sys mmHg / 75 dia mmHg – 46 pulse
2019-11-08 — 12:39pm – 104 sys mmHg / 70 dia mmHg – 49 pulse
2019-11-08 — 12:40pm – 101 sys mmHg / 70 dia mmHg – 51 pulse
2019-11-08 — 12:43pm – 108 sys mmHg / 71 dia mmHg – 51 pulse
2019-11-08 — 12:44pm – 103 sys mmHg / 71 dia mmHg – 50 pulse
2019-11-08 — 12:45pm – 106 sys mmHg / 71 dia mmHg – 49 pulse
2019-11-08 — 12:54pm – 103 sys mmHg / 72 dia mmHg – 48 pulse
2019-11-08 — 12:55pm – 103 sys mmHg / 71 dia mmHg – 48 pulse
2019-11-08 — 12:56pm – 102 sys mmHg / 71 dia mmHg – 48 pulse
2019-11-08 — 01:03pm – 105 sys mmHg / 69 dia mmHg – 48 pulse
2019-11-08 — 01:05pm – 107 sys mmHg / 69 dia mmHg – 48 pulse
2019-11-08 — 01:06pm – 104 sys mmHg / 68 dia mmHg – 49 pulse
2019-11-08 — 01:07pm – 105 sys mmHg / 70 dia mmHg – 49 pulse
2019-11-08 — 01:08pm – 110 sys mmHg / 69 dia mmHg – 48 pulse
2019-11-08 — 01:10pm – 108 sys mmHg / 70 dia mmHg – 47 pulse
2019-11-08 — 01:11pm – 106 sys mmHg / 70 dia mmHg – 47 pulse
2019-11-08 — 01:13pm – 104 sys mmHg / 68 dia mmHg – 48 pulse
2019-11-08 — 01:15pm – 106 sys mmHg / 69 dia mmHg – 49 pulse
2019-11-08 — 01:16pm – 105 sys mmHg / 70 dia mmHg – 50 pulse

Average

105.6 SYS mmHg / 70.8 DIA mmHg – 48.09 pulse

Blood Pressure – Day 4
Total sodium level is at 4911mg
Salt Intake at 2 tsp, 12 grams, 4416mg sodium
2019-11-09 — 01:28pm – 103 sys mmHg / 76 dia mmHg – 55 pulse
2019-11-09 — 01:44pm – 102 sys mmHg / 74 dia mmHg – 55 pulse
2019-11-09 — 01:48pm – 101 sys mmHg / 71 dia mmHg – 55 pulse
2019-11-09 — 01:49pm – 104 sys mmHg / 73 dia mmHg – 55 pulse
2019-11-09 — 02:00pm – 102 sys mmHg / 72 dia mmHg – 53 pulse
2019-11-09 — 02:01pm – 102 sys mmHg / 70 dia mmHg – 53 pulse
2019-11-09 — 02:02pm – 103 sys mmHg / 71 dia mmHg – 53 pulse
2019-11-09 — 02:03pm – 106 sys mmHg / 70 dia mmHg – 52 pulse
2019-11-09 — 02:04pm – 104 sys mmHg / 66 dia mmHg – 53 pulse
2019-11-09 — 02:05pm – 103 sys mmHg / 69 dia mmHg – 54 pulse
2019-11-09 — 02:06pm – 102 sys mmHg / 66 dia mmHg – 54 pulse
2019-11-09 — 02:07pm – 103 sys mmHg / 68 dia mmHg – 55 pulse
2019-11-09 — 02:08pm – 100 sys mmHg / 65 dia mmHg – 53 pulse
2019-11-09 — 02:09pm – 102 sys mmHg / 65 dia mmHg – 54 pulse
2019-11-09 — 02:10pm – 100 sys mmHg / 67 dia mmHg – 54 pulse
2019-11-09 — 02:12pm – 103 sys mmHg / 66 dia mmHg – 53 pulse
2019-11-09 — 02:13pm – 106 sys mmHg / 65 dia mmHg – 52 pulse
2019-11-09 — 02:14pm – 104 sys mmHg / 67 dia mmHg – 53 pulse
2019-11-09 — 02:15pm – 106 sys mmHg / 66 dia mmHg – 52 pulse
2019-11-09 — 02:16pm – 107 sys mmHg / 67 dia mmHg – 52 pulse
2019-11-09 — 02:17pm – 103 sys mmHg / 65 dia mmHg – 53 pulse

Average

103.4 SYS mmHg / 68.5 DIA mmHg – 53.47 pulse

Blood Pressure – Day 5
Total sodium level is at 518mg
Salt Intake at 0 tsp, 0 grams, 0mg sodium
2019-11-11 — 01:34pm – 107 sys mmHg / 75 dia mmHg – 51 pulse
2019-11-11 — 01:35pm – 111 sys mmHg / 75 dia mmHg – 50 pulse
2019-11-11 — 01:37pm – 103 sys mmHg / 72 dia mmHg – 50 pulse
2019-11-11 — 01:39pm – 105 sys mmHg / 73 dia mmHg – 50 pulse
2019-11-11 — 01:41pm – 102 sys mmHg / 71 dia mmHg – 52 pulse
2019-11-11 — 01:42pm – 104 sys mmHg / 70 dia mmHg – 51 pulse
2019-11-11 — 01:44pm – 103 sys mmHg / 68 dia mmHg – 51 pulse
2019-11-11 — 01:45pm – 105 sys mmHg / 69 dia mmHg – 51 pulse
2019-11-11 — 01:47pm – 105 sys mmHg / 70 dia mmHg – 49 pulse
2019-11-11 — 01:49pm – 107 sys mmHg / 66 dia mmHg – 51 pulse
2019-11-11 — 01:50pm – 108 sys mmHg / 69 dia mmHg – 50 pulse
2019-11-11 — 01:51pm – 105 sys mmHg / 67 dia mmHg – 51 pulse
2019-11-11 — 01:52pm – 105 sys mmHg / 66 dia mmHg – 51 pulse
2019-11-11 — 01:53pm – 104 sys mmHg / 69 dia mmHg – 50 pulse
2019-11-11 — 01:54pm – 104 sys mmHg / 68 dia mmHg – 49 pulse
2019-11-11 — 01:56pm – 109 sys mmHg / 70 dia mmHg – 49 pulse
2019-11-11 — 01:57pm – 107 sys mmHg / 65 dia mmHg – 49 pulse
2019-11-11 — 01:57pm – 104 sys mmHg / 67 dia mmHg – 49 pulse
2019-11-11 — 01:58pm – 109 sys mmHg / 67 dia mmHg – 48 pulse
2019-11-11 — 02:00pm – 107 sys mmHg / 66 dia mmHg – 49 pulse
2019-11-11 — 02:01pm – 108 sys mmHg / 67 dia mmHg – 49 pulse
2019-11-11 — 02:02pm – 108 sys mmHg / 67 dia mmHg – 50 pulse

Average

105.9 SYS mmHg / 68.9 DIA mmHg – 50 pulse

Average Blood Pressure Over 6 Days

0130mg added sodium – 108.6 SYS mmHg / 74.7 DIA mmHg – 47 pulse
0552mg added sodium – 110.3 SYS mmHg / 75.5 DIA mmHg – 46.7 pulse
1104mg added sodium – 106.3 SYS mmHg / 71.4 DIA mmHg – 47.8 pulse
2208mg added sodium – 105.6 SYS mmHg / 70.8 DIA mmHg – 48.09 pulse
4911mg added sodium – 103.4 SYS mmHg / 68.5 DIA mmHg – 53.47 pulse
0000mg added sodium – 105.9 SYS mmHg / 68.9 DIA mmHg – 50 pulse

Findings

No increase or decrease in average blood pressure.

Interpretation

Salt added to the diet did not increase blood pressure but studies have linked increased salt intake to cancer.[4] Moderate sodium intake of 3000mg – 70000mg has been shown to reduce cardiovascular events and death in the majority of the population.

Compared with moderate sodium intake [3000mg], high sodium intake [7000mg] is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular events and death in hypertensive populations (no association in normotensive population), while the association of low sodium intake with increased risk of cardiovascular events and death is observed in those with or without hypertension.[5,6]

So there might be some benefit to keeping sodium intake within the 3000 – 7000mg range if are not hypertensive and 3000mg if you are hypertensive.

References

  1. Advice to Restrict Salt Based on Bad Science
  2. Urinary sodium excretion, blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, and mortality: a community-level prospective epidemiological cohort study
  3. Salt: The Scapegoat for the Western Diet
  4. Review of salt consumption and stomach cancer risk: Epidemiological and biological evidence
  5. How Much Salt Is Too Much How Much Is Too Little AND Another Useless Osteoporosis Drug
  6. Associations of urinary sodium excretion with cardiovascular events in individuals with and without hypertension: a pooled analysis of data from four studies