NIH: High-Salt Diet Affects BrainFebruary 7, 2018 |
Diets that are high in salt (sodium chloride) have long been associated with high blood pressure. High blood pressure raises the risk for heart disease, stroke, kidney failure, and other health problems. Studies have also linked salt intake with brain health, but the mechanisms involved are poorly understood.
Previous studies suggested that high levels of salt in the diet can cause immune changes in the gut. Immune cells called T helper 17 (TH17) cells accumulate in the gut when mice are fed a high-salt diet. Studies suggest that high levels of TH17 could harm blood vessels.