How much time do you spend reading every day?
The effects of sodium intake depend on one’s diet. On a high carb diet (like the so-called healthy food pyramid) one retains excess sodium, hence the warnings to restrict sodium intake. On a lower carb diet this is not an issue.
Just based on my individual experience, sodium is by far the worst chemical which affects my body negatively. Sugar I can burn up by lots of activity, but excess sodium is hard to get rid of, especially in cool climate such as here in Seattle area. NaCl most certainly raises my BP which then has cascading bad effects on other issues.
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About 25 years ago, I was administered a 24 hour urine renin test at the Cornell Hospital hypertension clinic. It consisted of my having to collect my urine for 24 hours and take it to Cornell for analysis. Based on that test (I actually took it twice), I was told that I was not “salt sensitive,” and that I did not need to restrict my salt intake.
The physicians there also told me that the majority of people do not need to restrict salt intake, but because there are a small number of people who do, and the 24 test is unwieldy and expensive, it’s easier, from a public health standpoint to simply advise people to reduce their salt intake.
I wonder what the effects would be if the “total salt” levels in food were allowed to remain as they are, but for that total level to be a combination of sodium and potassium chloride with the ratio set to what is the optimum for good health.
And there's the money quote.