Evidence Shows Reduced Sodium Intake Lowers BP

But increase seen in levels of renin, aldosterone, adrenaline, noradrenaline, cholesterol, lipids

THURSDAY, Nov. 10 (HealthDay News) -- Reduced sodium intake is associated with a significant decrease in blood pressure (BP), and a concomitant increase in plasma levels of renin, aldosterone, adrenaline, noradrenaline, cholesterol, and triglycerides, according to a review published online Nov. 9 in the American Journal of Hypertension.

Niels A. Graudal, M.D., from University Hospital in Copenhagen, Denmark, and colleagues reviewed available literature to compare the effects of low-sodium and high-sodium diets on BP, renin, aldosterone, catecholamines, and lipids. A total of 167 studies assessing at least one of the parameters were included.

The investigators found that, for normotensive participants, the reduction in sodium resulted in decreased systolic BP (SBP) of −1.27 mm Hg in Caucasians, −4.02 mm Hg in blacks and −1.27 mm Hg in Asians. Diastolic BP (DBP) decreased by −0.05, −2.01 and −1.68 mm Hg, respectively, in Caucasians, blacks, and Asians. For individuals with hypertension, SBP decreased significantly in Caucasians, blacks, and Asians by −5.48, −6.44, and −10.21 mm Hg, respectively, and the corresponding decrease in DBP was −2.75, −2.40, and −2.60 mm Hg, respectively. There was a significant increase in renin, aldosterone, noradrenaline, adrenaline, cholesterol, and triglycerides with sodium reduction.

"In conclusion, low- versus high-sodium diet in Caucasians with normal BP decreases BP <1 percent. A significant concomitant and persistent increase in plasma renin, plasma aldosterone and to a lesser degree of plasma adrenaline and plasma noradrenaline may contribute to the small effect of sodium reduction on BP," the authors write.

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