(HealthDay News) — Sodium intake has a direct relationship with total mortality, according to a report published in the the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

Nancy Cook, Sc.D., professor of epidemiology at the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston, and colleagues reviewed Trials of Hypertension Prevention I and II. The first trial was conducted from 1987 to 1990 and the second from 1990 to 1995.

Cook’s team found that over 24 years, people who consumed less than 2,300 mg of sodium a day had a 25% lower mortality risk, compared with those who consumed 2,300 to 3,600 mg/day. The hazard ratio was found to be 1.12 per 1,000 mg/24 hours (95% confidence interval, 1.00 to 1.26; P = 0.05).

The authors of an accompanying editorial said this study and previous ones “support modest reductions in sodium intake among persons consuming high-sodium diets,” along with a healthy diet. The editorial authors also called for a randomized, controlled clinical trial of a low- versus moderate-intake salt diet to get a clearer idea of how salt consumption affects mortality risk.


1. Nancy R. Cook, ScDa; Lawrence J. Appel, MDb; Paul K. Whelton, MDc. Sodium Intake and All-Cause Mortality Over 20 Years in the Trials of Hypertension Prevention. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2016;68(15):1609-1617. doi:10.1016/j.jacc.2016.07.745.
2. Mente A, O’Donnell MJ, and Yusuf S. How Robust Is the Evidence for Recommending Very Low Salt Intake in Entire Populations? J Am Coll Cardiol. 2016;68(15):1618-1621. doi:10.1016/j.jacc.2016.08.008.