For heart health, less salt makes the most sense

Published: October, 2014

Eating plenty of potassium-rich foods is also a good plan.

A high-sodium diet can boost blood pressure, which may raise the risk of having a heart attack, stroke, or other cardiovascular problem. But just how much sodium—a main component of salt—is safe? The average American consumes about 3,400 milligrams (mg) of sodium daily. Current federal guidelines recommend getting no more than 2,300 mg, while the American Heart Association (AHA) advises a total of just 1,500 mg per day.

To continue reading this article, you must log in.
  • Research health conditions
  • Check your symptoms
  • Prepare for a doctor's visit or test
  • Find the best treatments and procedures for you
  • Explore options for better nutrition and exercise

New subscriptions to Harvard Health Online are temporarily unavailable. Click the button below to learn about our other subscription offers.

Learn More »