Current Hypertension Reports

, Volume 15, Issue 5, pp 417–425

Sodium Intake and Blood Pressure in Children

Pediatric Hypertension (JT Flynn, Section Editor)

DOI: 10.1007/s11906-013-0382-z

Cite this article as:
Hanevold, C.D. Curr Hypertens Rep (2013) 15: 417. doi:10.1007/s11906-013-0382-z


Elevation of blood pressure (BP) and the risk for progression to hypertension (HTN) is of increasing concern in children and adolescents. Indeed, it is increasingly recognized that target organ injury may begin with even low levels of BP elevation. Sodium intake has long been recognized as a modifiable risk factor for HTN. While it seems clear that sodium impacts BP in children, its effects may be enhanced by other factors including obesity and increasing age. Evidence from animal and human studies indicates that sodium may have adverse consequences on the cardiovascular system independent of HTN. Thus, moderation of sodium intake over a lifetime may reduce risk for cardiovascular morbidity in adulthood. An appetite for salt is acquired, and intake beyond our need is almost universal. Considering that eating habits in childhood have been shown to track into adulthood, modest sodium intake should be advocated as part of a healthy lifestyle.


Hypertension Prehypertension Blood pressure BP Sodium Salt appetite Cardiovascular morbidity Target organ injury Lifestyle modification Pediatric 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Division of NephrologySeattle Children’s HospitalSeattleUSA

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