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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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Why salt is dangerous for the patient of high blood pressure?

Why salt is dangerous for the patient of high blood pressure ? does it reaction immediatly at the patient ?
Tue, 15 Dec 2009
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Sodium is a large molecule in the blood stream, and so it draws fluid to it by osmosis. Someone with high blood pressure needs less intravasular volume, not more. The more intravasular volume, the higher the blood pressure simply because there is more volume to exert more pressure on vessels. Think of a garden hose. If you barely turn the faucet on and there is a tiny trickle of water, there is not enough pressure from the water to expand the hose itself. If however, you open the faucet full blast, the hose itself gets stretched to the max and becomes a bit stiff from the pressure of all that volume of water. It's not a great analogy, but I think a pretty good one. The more volume there is in the vasculature, the more pressure there is on the walls of that vasculature. And the more salt molecules present, the more volume is being drawn into the vasculature. It IS recommened therefore for people who already have high blood pressure to limit salt intake, and the rule of thumb for a low sodium diet is to keep consumption of sodium between 2-3 grams a day. Six grams is WAY too high. Injesting 6 grams a day of sodium for someone with high blood pressure is like saying, "Please let me have a stroke!" It could take a couple of weeks of serious salt restriction or longer to notice a difference, or it could be that you never notice a difference--and that restricted salt intake just keeps blood pressure from going even higher....That's good, too. On the contrary, it has been shown recently that it is not necessary for people with normal blood pressure to lower salt intake. If you are unsure about your own case, it's best to go to the doctor and get some lab work done, let him/her see your documentation of daily blood pressures, discuss medications, lifestyle and diet....just to be sure.
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