alexa Salt and Hypertension: An Evolutionary Perspective
ISSN: 2167-1095

Journal of Hypertension: Open Access
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Editorial

Salt and Hypertension: An Evolutionary Perspective

Vecihi Batuman*

Tulane University School of Medicine, Section of Nephrology and Hypertension-SL45, 1430 Tulane Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70112, USA

*Corresponding Author:
Vecihi Batuman, MD
Tulane University School of Medicine
Section of Nephrology and Hypertension-SL45
1430 Tulane Avenue, New Orleans
LA 70112, USA
Tel: 504-988-5346
Fax: 504-988-1909
E-mail: [email protected]

Received Date: October 10, 2012; Accepted Date: October 11, 2012; Published Date: October 17, 2012

Citation: Batuman V (2012) Salt and Hypertension: An Evolutionary Perspective. J Hypertens 1:e106. doi:10.4172/2167-1095.1000e106

Copyright: © 2012 Batuman V. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Abstract

Despite overwhelming evidence linking increased salt intake to hypertension, the relation is still disputed in some
circles. Viewing the introduction of salt to human diet on an evolutionary time scale would help us better understand the
role of salt in hypertension. Humans and related species evolved in a salt-free environment over millions of years with
intense evolutionary pressure for the selection of salt conserving genes. The recorded history confirms how rare and
inaccessible salt has been until recently. Thrusting the species that has exquisitely adapted to very low salt intake into
salt surfeit conditionsrepresents evolutionary mismatch with catastrophic health consequences. More than a quarter
of human populations suffer from hypertension. World Health Organization (WHO) and many governments have now
taken action to reduce dietary intake of salt in an effort to reduce the incidence of hypertension and the associated
cardiovascular morbidity and mortality.

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