Friday, July 22, 2011

Consensus Science

Speaking of Salt:

This week a meta-analysis of seven studies involving a total of 6,250 subjects in the American Journal of Hypertension found no strong evidence that cutting salt intake reduces the risk for heart attacks, strokes or death in people with normal or high blood pressure. In May European researchers publishing in the Journal of the American Medical Association reported that the less sodium that study subjects excreted in their urine—an excellent measure of prior consumption—the greater their risk was of dying from heart disease. These findings call into question the common wisdom that excess salt is bad for you, but the evidence linking salt to heart disease has always been tenuous.

This isn't new. There never were any convincing studies that salt was causing high blood pressure. It's true, there are a few salt-sensitive hypertensives, but they are few and far between. Some people are allergic to peanuts, but we don't use that fact to deny peanuts to everyone else.

Course, the consensus that salt was bad for you came about the same way as the warmist consensus -- through politics. People join the parade because well darnit, parades are fun. And what Liberal can pass up an opportunity to 1) posses the truth (even if it's wrong) and 2) tell other people what to do.