The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas on May 6, 2001 · Page 58
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The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas · Page 58

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Salina, Kansas
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Sunday, May 6, 2001
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Page 58
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BY JEAN CARPER The growing case against We eat 10 times more sodium than our Stone Age ancestors. And the dangers multiply. § Y ou MAY think excess salt is dangerous only if you have high blood pressure. Not so. Recent research finds that too much salt can harm healthy people's hearts and brains and shorten theii* lives. Specifically, salt overload boosts your chances of high blood pressure, strokes, heait failure, kidney disease, diabetes, cataracts, brittle bones, asthma, dementia and early death. Science's latest womes about salt: • Shorter life. "Salt sensitivity," a genetic condition, is an abnormal reaction to sodium that is aggravated by salt overload. Even if you don't have high blood pressvu-e, salt sensitivity can reduce your survival odds as much as high blood pressm-e does, doubling your chances of early death, mainly fi-om cai-diovasculai' disease. That's the sur- piising conclusion of a study by Myron H. Weinberger, M.D., of the Indiana University School of Medicine. One explanation: Excessive salt can enlarge the heai-t's left ventiicle, even in the absence of high blood pressui-e, much research show's. Most Americans have no clue whether they ai-e salt-sensitive. The odds ai-e 60% if you have high blood ;Afli$sentiiH|view Not all researchers agree that everyone 'benefits from less sodium, especially people who eat lots <^^^ and calcium; If you're on blood pressure : medication or concerned about your salt intake, check with your doctor. 1 pound mahi-mahi,cut in 4 pieces (or use sea bass, swordfish, flounder) VJ cup "lite" coconut milk 1 Tb. natural, unsalted peanut butter Dash hot pepper sauce, or more to taste Salt and pepper to taste 1 banana, diced 8-ounce can crushed or tidbit pineapple with juice y* cup flaked sweetened coconut '/] cup crushed unsalted peanuts Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place fish in a shallow baking dish or pie plate. In a small bowl, microwave coconut milk 1 minute. Stir in peanut butter, hot sauce, salt and pepper. Add banana, pineapple. Pour over fish. Top with coconut. Bake 15 minutes. Brown under broiler if desired. Sprinkle with nuts; serve with brown rice. S«rv«:4. P«rMrving:291 calories, 22g carbohydrates, 12g fat (3.4g saturated), 26g protein, 2g fiber, 123mg sodium. potato chips! , , dinners, pizza, lui chees^'caf*' simple restauVant rneal (2,000nng ir )V. Asian and Mexican eatenes),says ttie 'fC£nter%f Sdefi'ce'li^t^^^ pressure, but one in four Americans with normal blood pressure is also salt- sensitive. There's no easy test for salt sensitivity. That makes it all the more urgent for everybody to watch salt intake, Weinberger says. • Higher blood pressure. There's new evidence that high salt intake is not optimum for healthy people. It's well known that cutting back on salt can reduce high blood pressure. But new research shows it also dramatically lowers "normal" blood pressure, on avez-age, 5.6 points systolic (upper number) and 2.8 points diastolic (lower number). This shows that putting the lid on salt benefits people with and without high blood pressure, says Har- vai'd researcher Frank Sacks, M.D. Still, the impact is greatest on high blood pressure. People with high blood pressure who ate the DASH diet — rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy foods — and also slashed salt intake had drops of 11.5 points systolic and 5.7 diastolic, equaling reductions from prescription drugs. • More strokes. Curbing sodium helps prevent strokes by reducing high blood pressure, a m^jor stroke trigger. Mane University researchers report that an increase of just a teaspoon of salt a day nearly doubled the risk of fatal stroke in overweight people. High blood pressure also causes subtle brain damage that may lead to memory decline, reports Charles DeCarli, M.D., of the University of Kansas. TDO much salt also can make tiny blood vessels in the brain more likely to leak. In Japan, where salt intake is very high, bleeding strokes are more common than in America, ca CLICK ON LINKS ^ For scientific sources, visit usaweekend.com. Contributing Editor jEAif CARPER is the author o/Your Mii'acle Brain (HAXPERCOUISSJ. PRESIDENT, CEO & EDITOR: Marcia Bullard • PUBLISHER: Charlat Gabrldson • VICE PRESIDENTS: Dav* Barber, Bill Coaklcy, Jim Hackatt,Thomas Melfal ExKuthn Editor: Jack Curry CraativtMuagtR Casey Shaw Aisktwit Managing Editor Brenda Turner S«nkirEditor<:CralghBartxiza,Gayle Jo Carter, Camiaurman, Constance Kur2,Lorrle Lynch, PrIsdIlaTotten Copy CMcf: Tom Lent Copy Editor: Patricia Joy Make A Diffcrence Day Editon Pamela Brown Staff Writer Dennis McCafferty Beport«r/R««ardier«:Mlchele Hatty, Frappa Stout EdltorialAsjlrtant«:TamekaLHicl<s,Chrl5 A.Martin PuWichtNichole Tillman ContrlbutinaEdH»>n:Pam Anderson, Ken Burns, Jean Carper, Jean Sherman Chattity, Stephen Covey, Kenneth Davis, Dennie Hughes, Wally Lamb, Lisa Ling, Jim Louderbacic Lou Manfredlnl, Stephanie Mansfield,Tedd Mitchell, Stephanie Oaltes, Drew Pinslty, Rula Razek, Cokie Roberts, Steve Roberts, TavisSmiley,TenyStickels,JefireyZaslow Art Dlraclor Pamela Smith DMignOlractor.Leon Lawrence III AjslstaiilArtDlrKlonlJlanHoiton Dlractof of Photography: Matt Mendelsohn Daputy Photo Edtor Rebecca Roth Onlna: Amelia Stephenson, Irene Rudakewych Office SUff: Stephanie Keltz Advertliing Office: 535 Madison Ave, New York, N.Y.I 0022 EditorialOfn«:1000WllsonBlvd,Arilngton,Va.22229 Phon«:1-800-487-2956 E-mail: U5aw@usaweekend.com Printed In the USA O Copyright 2001 USA WEEKEND, a division of Gannett Co. Inc. Since 1953, your Family Weekly. THE MAGAZINE THAT MAKES A DIFFERENCE % USA VtfEEREND 6 USA WEEKEND • IVlay 4-6,2001

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