Inhaling large amounts of salt can cause hypertension

July 25, 2005 |

Workers in salt factories, who inhale large amounts of salt particles, are at risk of high blood pressure due to the increased salt intake. A study published today in the Open Access journal Environmental Health shows for the first time that breathing in large quantities of salt particles has just the same effect on blood pressure as eating a salty diet. Wearing face masks and plastic eyeglasses is enough to protect workers who are highly exposed to salt from salt-related high blood pressure.

A high consumption of salt has been shown to be directly linked to high blood pressure and the development of cardiovascular and kidney diseases, which are major causes of mortality worldwide. The European Food Safety Authority recently issued an opinion stating that current salt intakes in Europe far exceed nutritional requirements and may cause adverse health effects.

The present study, conducted by Kripa Haldiya and colleagues from the Desert Medicine Research Centre in Jodhpur, India, provides new data suggesting that inhaling large amounts of salt particles has the same effect as consuming a salty diet and increases blood pressure considerably, thus putting workers in salt factories around the world at risk of high blood pressure. This study represents the first demonstration of an occupational hazard linked to table salt.

Haldiya et al. measured the blood pressure of workers in two salt milling factories in Rajasthan, India. They divided the workers in two groups: one group worked close to the salt milling plant and was directly involved in crushing, grinding, milling and packing salt; the other group worked far away from the salt milling plant and was much less exposed to salt particles. The results of the study show that the first group of workers had a mean systolic blood pressure of 122.1 mmHg, which is significantly higher than the mean systolic blood pressure of 118.8 mmHg measured in the second group. In addition, workers from the first group had an incidence of hypertension of 12.2%, compared with an incidence of 7.0% in the second group. Wearing face masks and plastic spectacles for four days caused the mean systolic blood pressure of workers from the first group to drop significantly from 127.8 mmHg on the first day to 117.5 mmHg on the fourth day.

“This is a new observation, though it is in line with the hypothesis that, after being inhaled, salt may be absorbed from respiratory tract or […] the gastrointestinal tract. Consequent increases in plasma sodium may be responsible for increases in the blood pressure”, explain the authors.

Their findings also suggest that workers in factories such as the ones studied could easily protect themselves from the negative effects of exposure to salt particles by wearing face masks and plastic glasses.

From BioMed Central

5 Responses to Inhaling large amounts of salt can cause hypertension

  1. Anonymous August 19, 2009 at 7:53 am #

    Do not be foolish. Salt is one element that can be used in all the three conditions. High blood pressure, Low blood pressure and normal blood pressure. The function of the salt is right from the Adrinals and other endocrine glands to T Cells B Cells and water expulsion and retention in the body. It helps also in maintaining the thermostat of the body. When a miner is inhaling salt in minute nano particles, they are absorbing the salt directly into the energy channels and energy levels of the human body which is at the sub-neurotransmitter level. In that situation it is capable of reducing the blood pressure in a person who is bypertensive and increasing the blood pressure of a person who is having low pressure and Adrinal insufficiency. It can also maintain the pressure of the person who has balanced bp recordings. It is never conclusive on a set of people or a group of people. The conclusions will also be wrong when seen in the background of a place where the water contains plenty of calcium. And the people tested have heavy deposits of calcium in their bodies. In fact, no amount of masks can stop the inhalation of the energy level of the particles of saltmines. In fact a salt mine in one part of the world I happened to visit have a particular spot where you lick, many ailments are cured. Salt is inextricably intervwoven with the BP conditions of the human beings. But, the smelling of salt continuously may be curative in many rather than a harbinger for BP. This is the same way in which a homeopathic medicine works and Natrum Mur do wonders on human health. I think the health of those in the mines vis-a-vis their BP is perfect and they would have had much more BP complaints if they had not been working in the mines. with best wishes .udaya

  2. Anonymous March 9, 2009 at 5:09 pm #

    As for the diet, in order to reduce health risks one can choose natural sea salt instead of refined salt. The last one is mostly chemical sodium chloride while the sea salt contains useful minerals like zinc, iron, calcium, sulfur and magnesium.

    I Bubkin, Caralluma fimbriata

  3. Renaisauce April 15, 2008 at 4:14 pm #

    Water is also a poison. If you breath too much of it you can die. I don’t know how much, but it may be something like 2 gallons.

  4. Anonymous April 15, 2008 at 1:40 pm #

    salt is a poison and if you intake a big dose at once you may die. i dont remember exactly but the deadly dose is 20g

    artem, hoodia gordonii plus

  5. Anonymous December 19, 2005 at 1:05 pm #

    For years, medical authorities have marveled at the good health of American salt miners. They have few respiratory problems despite inhaling salt dust constantly in the workplace. The same phenomenon of respiratory health has led to the development of a large number of mines, the heaviest concentration being in Eastern Europe, where asthmatic patients are treated with the simple expedient of having them spend time underground in the salt mine.

    This study is wildly different from these real-world experiences and should be confirmed with better quality reserach before accepting Haldiya’s conclusions.

    Dick Hanneman
    Salt Institute

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