Are You at Increased Risk of Heart Troubles?
A high-salt diet may double the risk of developing heart disease in diabetics, says a new Japanese study. The risk is even higher among people whose diabetes isn’t well-managed.
Some people have type 2 diabetes and are unaware of their diagnosis. As a result, their blood sugar levels are poorly managed and are continuously battling chronically high blood sugar, leading to a host of health problems… including increased risk for heart disease!
In the study, published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism, researchers studied about 1,600 people, aged 40 to 70, who participated in a survey about their diets, including salt intake. Over an 8-year period the researchers reviewed data on the heart health of the participants.
They found that people with diabetes who consumed an average of 5.9 grams of sodium daily had twice the risk of developing heart disease than those who consumed (on average) just 2.8 grams of sodium daily.
The average American consumes about 3,300 mg of sodium, or 3.3 grams per day, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
They study also found that people with poorly managed type 2 diabetes saw their risk increase 10-fold when they had a diet high in salt.
Among the 359 participants with the highest sodium intake, 41 developed heart disease, compared with 23 of the 354 participants with the lowest sodium intake.
The researchers note that salt didn’t necessarily cause heart disease – just that there is an association.
Experts say this study means one thing for diabetics: That it’s important they track their sodium intake when managing their diet.