A new study is linking sodium, consumed most often via sodium chloride or salt, to enhanced risks around latent autoimmune diabetes (LADA) or type 2 diabetes. As per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) diabetes is an illness that affects 29 million Americans.
Type 2 diabetes is responsible for about 95% of all cases diagnosed and is found when levels of blood sugar are abnormal. LADA is another metabolic illness that occurs later in adults and can be misdiagnosed as type 2. LADA progresses slowly and may not need insulin treatment initially.
A recent study launched by the Institute of Environmental Medicine in Sweden, along with other researchers from Finnish and Swedish institutions, took a closer look at how sodium consumption affects the risks of LADA and type 2 diabetes.
Past studies have already revealed that sodium absorbed by daily salt intake can increase the risks around type 2 diabetes. Still, the researchers explain that this could be due to the impacts around insulin resistance as well as increased salt that results in hypertension, as well as gaining weight. Until this study, no other research has reviewed these impacts as it relates to sodium consumption and LADA risks.
The team reviewed data via the Epidemiological Study of Risk Factors for LADA and Type 2 Diabetes, and looked at 355 individuals with LADA and 1,136 participants with type 2 diabetes; reviewing results of analysis from findings of 1,379 individuals, who were healthy and in a controlled group.
Information was collected via questions about the individuals’ diets, daily. The team reviewed nutrients, daily calories, as well as sodium consumption for each individual. The study also considered risk factors around genetics and diabetes, and individuals were divided into ‘high risk’ and ‘other’ groups depending on their genes’ profile. Other variables that were looked into, included: sex, age, body mass index (BMI), fitness levels, smoking, and alcohol consumption – and adjustments were made accordingly.
Medical News Today reported that the researchers discovered this link: for every extra sodium gram (which equals out to 2.5 grams of salt) daily, there was a 43% increased chance of type 2 diabetes. This equaled out to an increased chance of 73% when it came to developing LADA.
Individuals in the study were also split up into three categories when it came to the amount of their sodium consumption. ‘Low’ intake equaled out to under 2.4 grams of sodium each day or up to six grams of salt; ‘medium’ intake equaled out to 2.4-3.15 grams of sodium/up to 7.9 grams of salt; and ‘high’ intake equaled out to 3.15 grams of sodium each day or over 7.9 grams of salt.
The team noticed that those participants that fell into the ‘high’ category had a 58% increased chance of type 2 diabetes than that of the ‘low’ intake group. Individuals with a higher genetic risk when it came to diabetes, along with an increased sodium intake daily, were also close to four times as likely to acquire LADA than those participants who had a low intake of sodium daily.
With the study results, the team ‘confirmed’ a link when it came to sodium consumption and type 2 diabetes. The researchers added that high daily sodium consumption can also be a risk when it comes to LADA especially when it comes to genetic factors and those carrying the diabetes gene.