I received an email a week ago from Tammy and she said:
“I’ve done everything to support healthy blood pressure and nothing has really worked. I’ve listened to my doctor, I’ve changed my diet and I’ve removed all the salt and still, there’s barely any improvement! What can I do because I don’t want to deal with the negative side effects of drugs.”
Well, the REAL cause of blood pressureproblems has more to do with aging and the negative changes in your hormones … and I’ll tell you more about this in a minute and how you can fix it, as I’ve done with my own father.
However, in regards to salt and blood pressure, that’s a myth!
The internet is full of misinformation and confusion. And my goal with this article is to help give you clarity and eliminate the frustration when it comes to your health.
Salt Is Essential For Life
So here’s the reality check based on facts and clinical studies – not what the so-called “experts” or “websites” said.
High-quality salt is essential for life. Most of the planet it made of saltwater. Your body is made up of saltwater.
When you’re in the hospital, they give you a “saline drip” , which is made up of saltwater.
So logically it makes sense that salt is important and needed.
As far as clinical evidence, in one study of over 6250 people, cutting salt intake did NOT reduce the risk for heart problems.1
Another study in 2013, showed that lower salt consumption actually INCREASED your risk of heart problems.2
A review of the available research reveals that much of the science behind the supposed link between “salt and blood pressure” is dubious and doubtful at best. According to Scientific American:3
“Intersalt, a large study published in 19884, compared sodium intake with blood pressure in subjects from 52 international research centers and found NO relationship between sodium intake and blood pressure problems.
In fact, the population that ate the most salt, about 14 grams a day, had a lower median blood pressure than the population that ate the least, about 7.2 grams a day…
For every study that suggests that salt is unhealthy, multiple ones reveal that it does not.”
So what about the studies that show lowering salt is good for blood pressure?
A 2004 analysis of 11 salt-reduction trials found that over the long-term, low-salt diets decreased systolic blood pressure by 1.1 millimeters of mercury (mmHg) and diastolic blood pressure by 0.6 mmHg. That equates to reducing your blood pressure from 120/80 to 119/79.6
That’s NOTHING! That doesn’t even count!
A 2006 study in the American Journal of Medicine study compared the reported daily sodium intakes of 78 million Americans to their risk of dying from heart disease over the course of 14 years.
The study concluded that lower sodium diets led to HIGHER death rates among those with cardiovascular disease!7
I can go on and on, but I hope you see where this is leading.
Salt is good for you. However…
Not ALL Salt Is Created Equal
Not only is salt relatively benign, but it’s also actually a nutritional goldmine,… IF you consume the right kind. Modern table salt has very little in common with natural, unrefined salt.
Regular table salt will damage your health, while natural salts are profoundly healing. Here’s a quick break-down of their basic ingredients:
- Natural salt: 84 percent sodium chloride, 16 percent naturally-occurring trace minerals, including silicon, phosphorous, vanadium, magnesium, potassium, etc.
- Processed (table) salt: 97.5 percent sodium chloride, 2.5 percent man-made chemicals, such as moisture absorbents and flow agents. These are dangerous chemicals.
Processing table salt also radically alters and damages the structure of the salt. Refined table salt is dried above 1,200 degrees Fahrenheit, and this excessive heat alters the natural chemical structure of the salt, making it toxic.8
One last thing processed “white” table salt causes water retention and bloating. Especially with all the sodium in pre-packaged foods. This causes headaches and makes you look “puffy”.
While natural salts, containing the minerals and electrolytes, are vital for water balance, enzyme production, stress reduction, immune system, adrenal and thyroid function.
What’s The Best Salt?
As stated, you want to avoid processed salts – which include the typical table salts, as well as those found in packaged foods and drinks.
Also, avoid the white “sea salts” because those are heavily processed as well.
You want to use unrefined natural salts, such as Himalayan Salt or Celtic Sea Salt. Celtic salt is slightly better because it has a little less sodium and more magnesium. However, what matters most between the two is how they taste for YOU!
When it comes to salt – go ahead and add some to your foods for a little bit of taste and a lot of extra health. Just AVOID the refined, processed “white” salt and stick to natural Himalayan or Celtic salts.
Even though today’s topic was about salt, the original message is that you must have healthy blood pressure. It should be 120/80 or lower for optimal health and the avoidance of a heart attack or stroke.
This is such an important topic to me, because we have a family history of blood pressure problems.