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Old 01-10-2005, 08:59 AM   #1
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Salt

I am 99% sure I am salt sensitive, as there have been times that my BP really went up after i had eaten things i know were high in salt - cheddar cheese, string cheese, sausage, microwave popcorn.

However, there have been a few times I ate things that i thought the BP would go up and it didnt

For a little over a month i have been cooking my own food most of the time & really restricting my salt intake, and I have been feeling tired all the time, so tired that I dont feel like working out

I know i dont get enough sleep, but this is unusual

Can not eating enough salt make you tired, or is this just my annual winter blahs?

 
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Old 01-10-2005, 09:01 AM   #2
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Re: Salt

also, my average BP has gone up a little, but this could be from not working out much

 
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Old 01-10-2005, 09:22 AM   #3
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Re: Salt

mojo,

What BP meds are you taking? If none, I think it's amost IMPOSSIBLE to lower salt enough to cause symptoms. Over a relatively short period of time our bodies can lower salt excretion to near zero with a SEVERE dietary salt depletion.

Low serum sodium can make you unbelievably tired, but you really can't do that with salt restriction unless sweating copiously. Even people with low sodium diets in desert regions manage to reduce the amount of salt they sweat out to nearly nil. (Evolution has worked long and hard on sodium balance.) Of course fevers and diarrhea can severely throw the balance out of whack...and almost any BP med might throw a wrench into this delicate mechanism.

I know this is a tough question, but how many milligrams of sodium do you think you've gotten down to? It is SOOOO hard! Can you get down to 1 gram?

If I severely restrict sodium (on RARE occasions.) I can drop weight like a rock and my BP goes down to ridiculous levels, so I know I'm salt sensitive too. But I'm a creature of the modern world and I don't want to spend 8 hours a day at a stove. So bring on the high-sodium prepared and canned foods. Alas!
Maybe SOME day!

Last edited by Lenin; 01-10-2005 at 09:29 AM.

 
Old 01-10-2005, 09:34 AM   #4
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Re: Salt

I'm not on any BP meds now, just prevacid for acid reflux & niaspan for cholesterol, which was never high before i started taking BP meds, i had so many side effects i am trying to lower BP by diet, excercise, and weight loss, i'm generally running 140's over high 90's

benicar hct made me gain a lot of weight, i got up to 270 (from 230 in may), i quit taking it in early november & i have been around 245 for a few weeks

some days i have no soduim, but i will eat some low sodium cream cheese, unsalted crackers, bread etc that has some in it so id say on average i'm somewhere between 500 - 1000 mg per day unless i eat out, & then i try to pick things that arent salted or get the kitchen to leave the seasoning off

i did just start taking hawthorn berry, which is used a lot in europe for high BP but its only been a couple of days & ive felt like this for over a month

havent seen any effect from the hawthorn berry yet, if its like conventional meds it may take a while, i figure i'll give it a couple weeks at least

 
Old 01-10-2005, 10:01 AM   #5
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Re: Salt

I don't know if an unusually low salt intake would likely lead to a feeling of perpetual fatigue, but too low an iron intake definitely can. You've changed your diet lately. Have you given up red meats? How is the iron content of your diet otherwise? I know that I have to take an iron supplement or I get unbelievable fatigue, since I eat almost no red meat. I've never had a blood test show anemia, but probably half a dozen times in my life I've reached that fatigue point where I really felt "my butt was dragging" before I realized I hadn't been taking iron supplements for several months. When I started them again, the fatigue disappeared.

I do know it is possible to restrict soldium intake too much. I have a relative who landed in the hospital with the problems which resulted. She was told she had been restricting salt too much. She cooked all her own food, no prepared food, and she chose things like unsalted canned goods. She also was on medications, though, which may have played a part in salt excretion.

Last edited by Uff-Da!; 01-10-2005 at 10:06 AM.

 
Old 01-10-2005, 10:11 AM   #6
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Re: Salt

I have cut back on red meat, trying to lose weight

Most of the meat I eat is elk or deer, i usually make a crock pot full of stew that last me a week, and i will have a deer or elk steak one or 2 nights a week

when i go out I usually have fish & chips which has almost no salt unless you add it (i checked with the kitchen)

also eating a lot of unsalted nuts or popcorn w/unsalted butter for snacks

 
Old 01-10-2005, 01:18 PM   #7
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Re: Salt

Mojo,

That really IS nice salt restriction; my hat is off to you. You can be my idol!

I doubt that the low salt is responsible for the draggy feeling and the January cold IS. Time will tell whether you start sniffling or not.

I would be desperately afraid to take an iron supplement because men have very few means of getting rid of iron and excess blood ferritin is being shown to be a nasty substance arterywise. Women need it because of menses but men only if they are careless shavers! I'd donate blood but with antibidies to HepA and B nobody would want it!
I even resent that I have to take iron supplements in all my rice and pasta...BY LAW!

Of course a friend (male) was very anemic and needed iron, but they later found out the anemia was caused by a bleeding colon carcinoma, and the iron was the least of his problems (AOK now though!)

Last edited by Lenin; 01-10-2005 at 01:20 PM.

 
Old 01-10-2005, 01:47 PM   #8
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Re: Salt

the things i hate giving up are cheese, sausage, & ham

i just wish i knew for sure if salt was my problem, my average bp hasnt really gone down since i reduced my salt consumption, but there have been enough times when i know that i have eaten a lot of salt that my BP has shot up suddenly that i am inclined to think salt at least aggravates the high side of my bp readings

 
Old 01-10-2005, 04:23 PM   #9
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Re: Salt

With eating that much elk and deer, dietary iron should not be a problem. Sometimes people decide they need to "do something about their diet" and suddenly try to switch to a vegetarian diet, which can be very low in iron if not carefully chosen. So low that yes, even men might be taking in too little, especially if their individual ability to absorb iron is a little under par.

The fatigue could be a problem of iron absorption or of absorption of vitamin B12, which is needed to absorb iron. You didn't give any hint of your age, but many older people need to have vitamin B12 injections, as their bodies are no longer capable of absorbing it adequately. Hopefully the problem will resolve itself quickly, if it is just a cold or something. But if not, do bring the fatigue to the attention of your doctor, who could check for the above and other things.

 
Old 01-10-2005, 06:32 PM   #10
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Re: Salt

I'm 38, and other than a little bit of a pot belly (I prefer to call it a liquid grain storage device ) I'm fairly fit

When the Dr first put me on meds, it was "pre-hypertension", 130's / low 90's - I had a full time sitting on my butt office job then, and I asked him to look at it as i just barely passed my pilot's medical exam (standards are 155/95 & in the AME's office I finally got a 94 after sitting forever - it had been a very stressful week at work)

every med he put me on, at least a half dozen over 3 or 4 years, has brought the BP down at first, but it was always spikey one way or the other, then it would shoot up after a few months

The last straw for me was when i gained 40 lb on benicar hct last year, and my BP was still going up - I quit taking it and have lost ~25 lb and the bp has come down to 140's / high 90's

I tried cutting down on salt & eliminating caffine to try to get another 5 to 10 points off my diastolic & it was about a week after that I noticed that my BP seemed to spike up after eating a lot of salt (but not 100% of the time)

 
Old 01-11-2005, 08:17 AM   #11
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Re: Salt

mojo,

People who restrict salt will be WILDLY sensitive to a big salt day...both with water-weight gain and blood pressure spiking. While low-salting, all your hormones are sttriving to retain salt the best they can. Add the salt and BOOM.
Eventually stasis returns, but what a bumpy ride!

I found the two things that are the sine qua non of a hypertension cure: low weight and no booze. Under 200 pounds and teetotalling, my BP meds were history.

Unfortunately, life being life, under 200 is HARD for me...tall and large framed. Soon, AGAIN!

Last edited by Lenin; 01-11-2005 at 08:17 AM.

 
Old 01-11-2005, 08:41 AM   #12
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Re: Salt

Hmm.. So maybe the only reason I am sensitive to salt is because i have been restricting it?

My BP hasnt really come down any more since I cut out the salt & caffiene - maybe I will give it another week or 2 but if I see no change i may just go back to my old diet

Mornings sure suck without coffee

 
Old 01-11-2005, 09:17 AM   #13
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Re: Salt

A morning without coffee is, errr, uh....A morning without coffee is...

Hey wait, I have NO IDEA what a morning without coffee is!

Last edited by Lenin; 01-11-2005 at 09:24 AM.

 
Old 01-17-2005, 01:11 PM   #14
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Re: Salt

Well, I got fed up with this almost no salt & no caffiene diet

Since I quit eating salt & drinking coffee just before thanksgiving my BP has actually gone up slightly, (from low 140's/mid to high 90's to around 150/100), and spiking up every time I have even a little salt, so last night I decided to start living normally again

This AM I've been averaging 160/110, hopefully it will go down after i get used to it again, I'm drinking a lot of fluids to keep the kidneys pumping

 
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