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Published on June 06, 2013

Hold the Salt!

Sodium (salt) is an important component for healthy body functioning. However, not much is needed each day to do the job. Consuming too much sodium is one of several risks factor for developing high blood pressure (hypertension). The average American consumes 3400 mg of sodium daily. This is much more than currently advised by the American Heart Association (www.heart.org) and the Centers for Disease Control (www.cdc.gov).

It is recommended that people age 50 and under try to keep their salt intake to no more than 2300 mg/day. This is equal to one teaspoon. If you are age 51 or older, are of any age and African-American, or any age with a chronic disease such as diabetes or hypertension, try to limit your daily salt intake to no more than 1500 mg/day (less than 3/4 teaspoon).

Reducing salt intake is just one of many treatment recommendations for those with hypertension. See your healthcare provider for consultation on what you can do to keep your blood pressure under control.

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