Dr. Bruce Van Vliet - November 16, 2011

Working towards understanding how a high sodium intake throughout life affects our physiology and health

Sodium is an important nutrient that is involved in many normal physiological processes. However, because of the addition of salt to our food (chiefly during the industrial food processing), we eat approximately 10 times as much sodium as naturally occurs in the food, and about 10 times what our ancestors ate. Accumulating evidence suggests that dietary sodium may adversely affect our health through effects on our blood pressure, direct effects on cardiovascular tissues, and other effects on non-cardiovascular conditions. Research in our laboratory suggests that the sodium intake has several distinct effects on blood pressure that differ with respect to their time course and reversibility. In addition, a growing literature points to an ability of a high sodium intake to trigger a form of developmental programming, which is a current focus of my laboratory



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