6

votes

Has anyone read this recent Gary Taubes salt article?

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created June 05, 2012 at 5:41 PM

I haven't really been paying too much attention to my salt intake in thinking that I know I'm not taking in too much, but after reading that, I might actually be taking in too little.

Enjoy!

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/03/opinion/sunday/we-only-think-we-know-the-truth-about-salt.html?pagewanted=all

Truth.

Medium avatar

(238)

on October 10, 2013
at 03:58 PM

Salt and added Iodine is not that old of a combination Early 20th century in the USA. Salt as a preservative has a much longer history.

72cf727474b8bf815fdc505e58cadfea

on May 20, 2013
at 05:03 PM

"If our boIf our bodies don't get enough salt, WE DIE." Yep. And if they don't get enough linoleic acid, WE DIE. Guess that means people who worry about too much linoleic acid in their processed foods are dummies. Also: Not enough aluminum? WE DIE. Not enough arsenic? WE DIE. This is not a good heuristic.

004d08b6edf7473c15fbb634abb6d88a

(281)

on June 20, 2012
at 04:44 PM

I didn't say he was right, just that it was an interesting read. The debate of salt/low-salt diets are plagued by "nutritionism" i.e. the problems with trying to isolate one food substance and analyze it's effects, good or bad. The problem with all dietary studies is tha you can't only eat salt. Or Vitamin A, or selenium. What we eat in conjunction to the nutrient being studied as well as our individual genetics are just as important. No wonder multiple studies of the same nutrient can have vastly different outcomes. There are unavoidable complications that make nutrition science imperfect.

Ec39179d4c06199471827a706adb2896

(242)

on June 19, 2012
at 06:41 PM

I don't know... I don't think he's supporting eating junk food; especially after reading the rest of his body of work. He's just saying that we need to question our accepted norms specifically in our nutrition field. Which seems to be a general message of his.

Medium avatar

(10601)

on June 16, 2012
at 02:44 PM

This article wasn't written for you. It was written for subway riders feeding bagel pieces to rats. What message are they getting?

B885dc10c6263f5a4492205d50560bee

(401)

on June 16, 2012
at 02:37 PM

But we're *not* eating Pringles and restaurant food. One of the main goals of paleo/primal is to eat unprocessed foods, hence avoiding items that are laden with salt meant to sit on the shelf for years on end. You're telling me that my fresh, unprocessed meat, vegetables, and berries are naturally high in salt?

Medium avatar

(10601)

on June 16, 2012
at 12:10 PM

The way I see it, he has written a puff piece to keep people eating salty junk food. Yay Gary.

Medium avatar

(10601)

on June 16, 2012
at 12:03 PM

For the life of me I can't believe that paleos are defending the Neolithic practice of salting things! What part of Pringles, restaurant food and reward don't you get? Salt is in food these days to make you overeat. We're not living in the past when it was precious and expensive for food preservation.

Medium avatar

(10601)

on June 16, 2012
at 11:43 AM

So do I. Unsalted isn't the same.

Medium avatar

(10601)

on June 16, 2012
at 11:39 AM

Yeah once more playing the cheap provocateur, cherry picking data. Did you chance to read the rebuttal letters to the NYT which note the thousands of studies Taubes ignored?

Medium avatar

(10601)

on June 16, 2012
at 11:34 AM

Truth? I bloat if I eat too much salt. I notice it in my fingers, legs and feet most, and on the scale I gain 2-3 pounds.

76026e8ef496039d5075440ff731aa0d

(5386)

on June 16, 2012
at 03:30 AM

I updated the link, sorry about that! Truth.

03a4ec34751186201a56da298ac843ce

(4100)

on June 15, 2012
at 04:37 AM

I tried to read it, but I was prompted to sign in and enter a password. Guess I'll just take your word for it, since I love salt anyway

Fd70d71f4f8195c3a098eda4fc817d4f

(8014)

on June 05, 2012
at 09:16 PM

"Hence a person being 'worth his/her salt.'" Yep. Not to mention referring to good, decent people as "salt of the earth." And the word "salary" coming from the fact that ancient Romans (I think...I could be remembering wrong) were actually paid in salt sometimes.

C116f7e54620c6003b67cd4450a298cd

on June 05, 2012
at 09:01 PM

i like salt rock dipped in butter with a few twists of the salt mill on top (the pink stuff)! Salt rocks! - pun intended.

76026e8ef496039d5075440ff731aa0d

(5386)

on June 05, 2012
at 07:48 PM

People have been programmed with what they should eat, drink, smoke, wear, drive etc. since the 19 30's...Television has taught people that milk isn't just a product, it’s essential, it saves lives and if your kids aren't getting enough milk, you're a bad parent. The idea of sheeple is not new...but for some reason the idea of thinking for yourself and finding your own answers to this very day seems like more work than it's worth, it's better to let your old friend the TV tell me the unbiased Truth that it's provided me and my family for generations...as nature intended. Truth.

Bf57bcbdc19d4f1728599053acd020ab

(5043)

on June 05, 2012
at 06:29 PM

Interesting tags, truth. Are you Steve Jobs' evil twin, or is Taubes? LOL. Yes I did read it.

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8 Answers

12
B885dc10c6263f5a4492205d50560bee

(401)

on June 05, 2012
at 06:13 PM

I've never understood why people think a low- or no-salt diet is beneficial. If our bodies don't get enough salt, WE DIE.

There's a reason salt has been more valuable than gold and jewels throughout human existence; hence a person being 'worth his/her salt'.

Fd70d71f4f8195c3a098eda4fc817d4f

(8014)

on June 05, 2012
at 09:16 PM

"Hence a person being 'worth his/her salt.'" Yep. Not to mention referring to good, decent people as "salt of the earth." And the word "salary" coming from the fact that ancient Romans (I think...I could be remembering wrong) were actually paid in salt sometimes.

76026e8ef496039d5075440ff731aa0d

(5386)

on June 05, 2012
at 07:48 PM

People have been programmed with what they should eat, drink, smoke, wear, drive etc. since the 19 30's...Television has taught people that milk isn't just a product, it’s essential, it saves lives and if your kids aren't getting enough milk, you're a bad parent. The idea of sheeple is not new...but for some reason the idea of thinking for yourself and finding your own answers to this very day seems like more work than it's worth, it's better to let your old friend the TV tell me the unbiased Truth that it's provided me and my family for generations...as nature intended. Truth.

B885dc10c6263f5a4492205d50560bee

(401)

on June 16, 2012
at 02:37 PM

But we're *not* eating Pringles and restaurant food. One of the main goals of paleo/primal is to eat unprocessed foods, hence avoiding items that are laden with salt meant to sit on the shelf for years on end. You're telling me that my fresh, unprocessed meat, vegetables, and berries are naturally high in salt?

Medium avatar

(10601)

on June 16, 2012
at 12:03 PM

For the life of me I can't believe that paleos are defending the Neolithic practice of salting things! What part of Pringles, restaurant food and reward don't you get? Salt is in food these days to make you overeat. We're not living in the past when it was precious and expensive for food preservation.

Medium avatar

(10601)

on June 16, 2012
at 02:44 PM

This article wasn't written for you. It was written for subway riders feeding bagel pieces to rats. What message are they getting?

72cf727474b8bf815fdc505e58cadfea

on May 20, 2013
at 05:03 PM

"If our boIf our bodies don't get enough salt, WE DIE." Yep. And if they don't get enough linoleic acid, WE DIE. Guess that means people who worry about too much linoleic acid in their processed foods are dummies. Also: Not enough aluminum? WE DIE. Not enough arsenic? WE DIE. This is not a good heuristic.

7
68294383ced9a0eafc16133aa80d1905

(5795)

on June 05, 2012
at 06:44 PM

I like salted butter...

Medium avatar

(10601)

on June 16, 2012
at 11:43 AM

So do I. Unsalted isn't the same.

7
Cf416725f639ffd1bb90764792ce7b8a

(2799)

on June 05, 2012
at 06:42 PM

I like salt on my butter.

C116f7e54620c6003b67cd4450a298cd

on June 05, 2012
at 09:01 PM

i like salt rock dipped in butter with a few twists of the salt mill on top (the pink stuff)! Salt rocks! - pun intended.

6
004d08b6edf7473c15fbb634abb6d88a

(281)

on June 05, 2012
at 08:09 PM

Gary Taubes does it again. It's so interesting to learn the history of the health campaigns we're preached to about and about all the dissenting scientific studies that don't get much press. I love that he included quotes about how this information shouldn't be made public.

Medium avatar

(10601)

on June 16, 2012
at 11:39 AM

Yeah once more playing the cheap provocateur, cherry picking data. Did you chance to read the rebuttal letters to the NYT which note the thousands of studies Taubes ignored?

004d08b6edf7473c15fbb634abb6d88a

(281)

on June 20, 2012
at 04:44 PM

I didn't say he was right, just that it was an interesting read. The debate of salt/low-salt diets are plagued by "nutritionism" i.e. the problems with trying to isolate one food substance and analyze it's effects, good or bad. The problem with all dietary studies is tha you can't only eat salt. Or Vitamin A, or selenium. What we eat in conjunction to the nutrient being studied as well as our individual genetics are just as important. No wonder multiple studies of the same nutrient can have vastly different outcomes. There are unavoidable complications that make nutrition science imperfect.

3
Ec39179d4c06199471827a706adb2896

(242)

on June 05, 2012
at 07:48 PM

I think this is Taubes once again calling out conventional wisdom and bad science. Totally dig the Huxley quote at the end of the article too.

Medium avatar

(10601)

on June 16, 2012
at 12:10 PM

The way I see it, he has written a puff piece to keep people eating salty junk food. Yay Gary.

Ec39179d4c06199471827a706adb2896

(242)

on June 19, 2012
at 06:41 PM

I don't know... I don't think he's supporting eating junk food; especially after reading the rest of his body of work. He's just saying that we need to question our accepted norms specifically in our nutrition field. Which seems to be a general message of his.

0
56c28e3654d4dd8a8abdb2c1f525202e

(1822)

on October 10, 2013
at 03:42 PM

Well, one of the major reasons for salt being so valuable in history is that it was the only (poor) iodine supplement for a long time, and many areas of the world were iodine deficient already in the Paleolithic. Another major reason was meat. No refrigeration, it meant all meat had to be cured or eaten right away. Just my grandparents were eating several grams of salt a day from meat alone. But Nature has made sure that we are naturally attracted to salt, sweet, and fat. That is because you need more than in a random natural diet. You have to avoid the pitfalls of artificial, processed sugars and fats, and also learn what is your optimal salt intake.

Let me also mention that people have eaten salted meat for so long that there is certainly a fraction of the population having salt tolerance far in excess of that of primates, just like there are people who can digest grains better.

Medium avatar

(238)

on October 10, 2013
at 03:58 PM

Salt and added Iodine is not that old of a combination Early 20th century in the USA. Salt as a preservative has a much longer history.

0
A6651a2b6886cd35d161412587f504c2

on October 10, 2013
at 03:28 PM

I'd have to say that salt depends on a lot on diet. I had horrible problems with swelling whenever I had salt prior to going low carb. Now that I'm low carb, I have to force myself to get enough because I am so used to leaving it out of everything. I think the difference is that having a high insulin level will cause your kidneys to retain salt and generate more uric acid...which can contribute to problems like edema, gout, and hypertension. When carbs are restricted and insulin level drops, the kidneys start excreting more salt and those issues disappear.

0
Medium avatar

(10601)

on June 16, 2012
at 11:52 AM

I have hypertension and I found the article shallow and insulting. So did the following readers:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/06/opinion/salt-in-your-food-the-effects-on-health.html

Overeating salt has very noticeable negative effects on me. It didn't when I was 25 but it does now. Oh, the article left that part out...along with any studies which might call Taube's assertion into question...

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