High sodium/potassium ratio and high blood pressure
An increased caloric intake is often associated with a high salt consumption. The influence of the dietary sodium/potassium ratio for manifestation of high blood pressure is controversial. It remains undefined whether within a given population an increased sodium intake leads to a statistically provable blood pressure increase. Food with a low sodium/potassium ratio and a low caloric density should nonetheless be preferred. It is recommended to reduce the salt intake from the usual 150-200 mmol/day of affluent societies to at least 100 mmol/day that does not result in an impairment of taste. There is increasing evidence that a raised sodium intake leads to an increased sympathetic outflow of the brain originating from centers in the brain stem (1). Both, a too high caloric and sodium intake could by a common pathway accelerate the manifestation of hypertension.

1. Pawloski-Dahm CM, Gordon FJ: Increased dietary salt sensitizes vasomotor neurons of the rostral ventrolateral medulla. Hypertension 1993;22:929-933