Claim: Eating too much salt led to 2.3 million heart-related deaths worldwide in 2010

Since there’s not a single study that shows consumption of salt is dangerous to healthy people, these epidummyologists have attempted to concoct a meta-analysis to prove their pre-determined point. They get a “Fail” because 0n=0.

The media release is below.


Eating too much salt led to 2.3 million heart-related deaths worldwide in 2010

American Heart Association Meeting report

Eating too much salt contributed to 2.3 million deaths from heart attacks, strokes and other heart-related diseases throughout the world in 2010, representing 15 percent of all deaths due to these causes, according to research presented at the American Heart Association’s Epidemiology and Prevention/Nutrition, Physical Activity and Metabolism 2013 Scientific Sessions.

The researchers analyzed 247 surveys of adult sodium intake, stratified by age, gender, region and country between 1990 and 2010 as part of the 2010 Global Burden of Diseases Study, an international collaborative study by 488 scientists from 303 institutions in 50 countries around the world.

Next, they determined how the amount of sodium people were consuming was affecting their risk of cardiovascular disease, by performing a meta-analysis of 107 randomized, prospective trials that measured how sodium affects blood pressure, and a meta-analysis of how these differences in blood pressure relate to the risk of developing cardiovascular disease compared with consuming no more than 1,000 mg per day of sodium, which the researchers defined as an optimal amount of sodium for adults. Cardiovascular disease includes all diseases of the heart and blood vessels, including stroke.

Nearly 1 million of these deaths – 40 percent of the total — were premature, occurring in people 69 years of age and younger. Sixty percent of the deaths occurred in men and 40 percent were in women. Heart attacks caused 42 percent of the deaths and strokes 41 percent. The remainder resulted from other types of cardiovascular disease. Eighty-four percent of these deaths due to eating too much sodium were in low and middle-income countries, rather than high-income countries.

“National and global public health measures, such as comprehensive sodium reduction programs, could potentially save millions of lives,” said Dariush Mozaffarian, M.D., Dr.P.H., lead author of the study and co-director of the Program in Cardiovascular Epidemiology and associate professor of medicine and epidemiology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School and the Harvard School of Public Health.

Among the 30 largest countries in the world, those with the highest death rates (per million adults) due to over consuming sodium were:

Ukraine – 2,109
Russia – 1,803
Egypt – 836
Among all countries, the three countries with the lowest death rates (per million adults) due to over consuming sodium were:

Qatar – 73
Kenya – 78
United Arab Emirates – 134
The U.S. ranked 19th out of the 30 largest countries, with 429 deaths per million adults due to eating too much sodium (representing 1 in 10 US deaths due to these causes).

The American Heart Association recommends limiting sodium in your diet to no more than 1,500 mg a day, and has tips on how to reduce the amount of sodium in your diet, as well as information on six commonly consumed foods that are high in sodium.

13 thoughts on “Claim: Eating too much salt led to 2.3 million heart-related deaths worldwide in 2010”

  1. Sugar was brought over from the New World, no? So for Europe and the rest of the non Meso-American world, it hasn’t been around “since the start of civilization.”

  2. You have it exactly right — some people have a problem excreted salt and should limit their intake. The rest of us should ignore salt warnings.

  3. maybe i can throw the datapoint in that salt and sugar have been conservation agents since the beginning of civilization. Many millennia. Ans still we are here. And average age rose for a large part because of less childdeath. Looking at history you see many 80+, eating sugar and salt, drinking from lead cups.

  4. I can throw one “data point” to reinforce this observation. My grandmother referred to sugar (or, alternately, salt) as White Death, whenever she saw me consume either of them. That was long before the onset of the politically correct era; before vegetarianism, frutarianism, and other fads we suffer from today.

    Long enough ago, but already when the etymology of “soldier” had been forgotten.

  5. Re-cycling is not limited to paperboard and tin cans. Health scares have been recycled for as long as I can remember. Some egotistical notariety nut invents a health scare. The media runs with it like a stampede of longhorn steers. The gullable take it seriously and damage their health, then legitimate science debuks it and it is forgotten. A few years down the road someone else digs it out of the landfill of history and repeats the cycle.

    The frequency is something like this: Salt scare about every ten years. Calcium scare about every 15-20 years. Vitamin scare about every 15 years. Sugar scare about every ten years. Dairy product scare about every 20 years.

    This is not legitimate research, it is taking dumpster diving and scavenging to a new low.

  6. The upshot seems to remain that people who are sensitive to sodium should limit their intake and people who are not should worry about things that do matter for them.
    In “killing” (or contributing to the deaths of) 2.3 million people, how many died before age 75 and how many after? Of course using 75 as the definition of premature death is arbitrary but any cutoff will be.

  7. Since the matter concerns the amalgamation of many reports, n is understood to be a large number. The comment gets an A +, but the science gets an F -.

  8. Not enough salt is just as deadly:
    Conclusions The association between estimated sodium excretion and CV events was J-shaped. Compared with baseline sodium excretion of 4 to 5.99 g per day, sodium excretion of greater than 7 g per day was associated with an increased risk of all CV events, and a sodium excretion of less than 3 g per day was associated with increased risk of CV mortality and hospitalization for CHF. Higher estimated potassium excretion was associated with a reduced risk of stroke.

  9. I think that this only tells half the story.

    Meta experiment: too much sodium in the blood does impact upon retention of fluid. The question should become does retention of fluid impact upon blood pressure etc.

    It is far better to limit sodium consumption than to totally eliminate it because some is necessary for the body. The question is how much is necessary.

    As usual: there are lies, damn lies and statistics. One can always use statistics to make a point and to get any required response… just ask Michael Mann!!

  10. I eat 2,000 +/- 600 mg (if that’s their preferred unit) with one sandwich. I just pour it on until it becomes tasty enough. Am I supposed to feel sorry for 2.3 million deaths now?

  11. Sandyjfs has discussed this issue in the past and has shown that consuming less salt, or almost eliminating salt leads to much earlier death rates than normal. But we still have the “War on Salt”.

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