Sodium and High Blood Pressure

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Topic Overview

Eating a lot of sodium is linked with high blood pressure and problems in the heart, kidneys, and blood vessels.

Reducing sodium in the diet can prevent high blood pressure in those at risk for the disease and can help control high blood pressure. Limiting sodium is part of a heart-healthy eating plan that can help prevent heart disease and stroke.

Try to eat less than 2,300 milligrams (mg) of sodium a day. If you limit your sodium to 1,500 mg a day, you can lower your blood pressure even more.footnote 1

To learn more, see:

Healthy Eating: Eating Less Sodium.
Low-Salt Diets: Eating Out.

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  1. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, U.S. Department of Agriculture (2015). 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans 8th ed. Accessed January 12, 2016.

Other Works Consulted

  • Appel LJ, et al. (2011). The importance of population-wide sodium reduction as a means to prevent cardiovascular disease and stroke: A call to action from the American Heart Association. Circulation, 123(10): 1138–1143.
  • Whelton PK, et al. (2012). Sodium, blood pressure, and cardiovascular disease: Further evidence supporting the American Heart Association sodium reduction recommendations. Circulation, 126(24): 2880–2889.


ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical ReviewerE. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Martin J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine
Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical ReviewerRhonda O'Brien, MS, RD, CDE - Certified Diabetes Educator
Colleen O'Connor, PhD, RD - Registered Dietitian

Current as ofMay 6, 2016