The habit of adding salt to food shortens life by more than two years

salt food
Scientists have found that people who add salt to their dishes at every meal are at increased risk of premature death.

Researchers at Tulane University have concluded that the habit of adding more salt to food can shorten a person's life by years. Their findings were published in the European Heart Journal. Experts stated that adding salt to an already prepared dish is a widespread eating behavior. According to their calculations, approximately 20 percent of the salt people consume is a seasoning used to enhance the taste of food that has already been cooked before.

The authors of the project analyzed the data of more than half a million (501,379) people who were participants in nine years of observations. At the beginning of the study, the volunteers were between 40 and 64 years old. Subsequently, more than 18 thousand subjects died. After examining exactly how the participants in the observations consumed salt, scientists made the following conclusions:

  • Compared with people who never added salt to their dishes, those who added amount of salt had a 28% higher risk of dying during the study period.
  • Men aged 50 who always added salt to their diets were at risk of dying prematurely by more than two (2.28) years.
  • Women in their 50s with a habit of adding salt to food risk dying 1.5 years earlier.

“Our results show that even a modest reduction in salt intake can bring significant benefits to middle-aged and older people. As you age, you should get used to not putting salt in your food at all, making do with spicy plants,” concluded the lead researcher of the project, Professor B. Lu Qi.
The study also showed that the harm from eating salt can be reduced by increasing consumption of fruits and vegetables. Scientists attribute this effect to their potassium content.

Earlier, the portal wrote that a lack of fiber in the diet is associated with susceptibility to three types of cancer.

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