Anyone who has ever spent a day being lazy on the couch eating salty snacks knows about the inevitable feelings of bloating and shame that follow, but Canadian researchers now believe that this type of behavior may also lead to cognitive decline.
In a three-year study of more than 1,200 individuals, scientists from Baycrest Centre for Geriatric Care in Toronto discovered that inactivity combined with a sodium intake of more than 3,091 milligrams per day was strongly associated with impaired cognition.
"But the good news is that sedentary older adults showed no cognitive decline over the three years that we followed them if they had low sodium intake," said lead investigator Alexandra Fiocco.
This was the first study that investigated salt's association with mental health, the authors said.
These findings may be of great significance when it comes to prevention efforts against Alzheimer's disease, in light of the aging baby boomer generation and the growing prevalence of the neurological disorder.