PARIS, July 11 (Benin News) –
According to a study of more than 500,000 people and published in the “European Heart Journal”, people who salt their food more at the table have a higher risk of dying prematurely, whatever the cause.
Compared with people who never or rarely added salt, those who always added salt had a 28% increased risk of premature death. In the general population, about three out of every 100 people between the ages of 40 and 69 die prematurely. The increased risk of always adding salt to food seen in the current study suggests that more than one person in 100 could die prematurely in this age group.
Additionally, the study found a shorter life expectancy in people who always add salt than in those who never or rarely add salt. At age 50, the life expectancy of women and men, respectively, who always added salt to their diet was reduced by 1.5 years and 2.28 years, compared to those who never or rarely added salt.
The researchers, led by Professor Lu Qi of the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine in the US, say their findings have several public health implications.
“As far as I know, our study is the first to assess the relationship between adding salt to food and premature death,” he says. Provides new evidence to support recommendations to change eating behaviors to improve health. Even a modest reduction in sodium intake, by adding less salt to foods or not adding salt at the table, is likely to produce substantial health benefits, especially when achieved in the general population.
Measuring total sodium intake is notoriously difficult because many foods, especially convenience and processed foods, are heavily salted before they reach the table. Studies assessing salt intake by urinalysis often take only one urinalysis and thus do not necessarily reflect typical behavior. In addition, foods rich in salt are often accompanied by foods rich in potassium, such as fruits and vegetables, which is good for us.
Potassium is known to protect against the risk of heart and metabolic diseases such as diabetes, while sodium increases the risk of diseases such as cancer, high blood pressure, and stroke. For these reasons, the researchers decided to look at whether or not people added salt to their food at the table, regardless of the salt added during cooking.
“Adding salt to foods at the table is a common dietary behavior that is directly related to an individual’s long-term preference for salty-tasting foods and their habitual salt intake,” Qi notes. In the Western diet, the addition of table salt accounts for 6-20% of total salt intake and is a unique way to assess the association between habitual sodium intake and risk of death.
The researchers analyzed data from 501,379 people who took part in the UK Biobank study. When they joined the study between 2006 and 2010, participants were asked via a touchscreen questionnaire whether they added salt to their food never/rarely, sometimes, almost always, always, or preferred not to answer.
The researchers adjusted their analyzes to take into account factors that could affect the results, such as age, gender, race, deprivation, body mass index (BMI), smoking, alcohol use, physical activity, diet and medical conditions such as diabetes. , cancer and heart and vascular diseases. The participants were followed for an average of nine years. Premature death was defined as death before the age of 75 years.
In addition to finding that always adding salt to food was associated with a higher risk of premature death from all causes and shorter life expectancy, the researchers found that these risks tended to be slightly reduced in people who ate the most fruit and vegetables, although these results were not statistically significant.
“This result did not surprise us, as fruits and vegetables are important sources of potassium, which has protective effects and is associated with a lower risk of premature death,” says Professor Qi. Since our study is the first to report an association between the addition of salt to food and mortality, further studies are needed to validate the results before recommendations can be made.
Professor Qi and his colleagues will conduct further studies on the relationship between the addition of salt to food and various chronic diseases, such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes. They also hope to conduct potential clinical trials to test the effects of reducing added salt on health outcomes.