Study: Too much salt boosts teens’ heart attack, stroke risk

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WACO, Texas (KWTX) A study finds that teenagers who ingest too much salt are putting themselves at higher risk for heart attacks and strokes.

Researchers examined 777 participants at an Ohio Children's Hospital who self-reported their diets.

The elasticity of their arteries was measured along with their blood flow, and the results showed that the teenagers who ingested more salt had less elasticity in their arteries, which caused blood flow to be restricted.

Another study found that the average sodium intake for teenagers ages 14 to 18 was more than 3,500 milligrams a day.

Dr. Tim Martindale with Providence Health Center said he sees many teens who are overweight and are doing serious damage to their arteries with their eating habits.

Martindale said he recommends parents talk to their children about nutrition and teach them that everything is okay to eat, but only in moderation.

He also suggest parents teach their children to read labels and to make smarter choices when eating.

"Avoid salty snacks, fried foods, and adding a lot of salt to your foods,” he said.

Martindale also said beverages can be a problem as well and advised teens to avoid consuming too many fruit beverages or energy drinks.

Martindale recommends limiting salt intake to 23 milligrams per day.