It’s well known that a high-content dietsalt causes high blood pressure, which is a risk factor for many health problems, including heart disease and stroke. But over the past decade, studies conducted among the population have shown that there is a connection between salt intake and stroke, regardless of high blood pressure and the risk of developing cardiovascular disease. It has become apparent that somewhere between salt intake and brain health, somewhere in the chain link is missing.
And now, a recent study showedA new connection: Immune signals sent from the intestines can compromise the blood vessels of the brain, resulting in poor brain health and cognitive impairment. Surprisingly, this study reveals a previously unknown relationship between the intestines and the brain, mediated by the immune system, and shows that excess salt can adversely affect human brain health by damaging the blood vessels of the brain, regardless of the effect on blood pressure.
Salt harms the brain
This study offers new therapeutictasks to combat stroke - the second leading cause of death in the world - and cognitive dysfunction. Reducing salt intake is applicable to people all over the world, since almost every adult consumes too much salt: on average, 9-12 g per day, or about twice the maximum recommended level of the World Health Organization (5 g).
The study was conducted on mice and showed thatimmune reactions in the small intestine trigger a cascade of chemical reactions that reach the blood vessels of the brain, which reduce blood flow to the cortex and hippocampus, two areas of the brain that are important for learning and memory. This, in turn, leads to a decrease in the results of tests for cognitive abilities. Learning and memory impairment was evident even in the absence of high blood pressure.
The intestines respond to excess salt and directsimmune signals that lay the foundation for the deterioration of the vital vascular complex of the brain and impair cognitive function. So far, the study has been conducted on experimental animals, but scientists have no reason to believe that human studies will lead to different results.
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