Hypertension concerns.I am a 53-year-old female with 25 years of running under my belt. I currently run about 35 miles a week, as I'm training for a marathon. I am 5' 5" and 120 lbs. I run a 5K in 24:30 and a marathon in about 4:15. I do tempo runs, long runs, and speedwork.
I consume an enormous amount of salt, and it concerns me. I do not particularly like salt, but find, most often in the summer, that I crave it. I do sweat profusely pro·fuse
1. Plentiful; copious.
2. Giving or given freely and abundantly; extravagant: were profuse in their compliments. . I have a history of hypertension in the family. At 120 over 75, my blood pressure is still good, if slightly higher than the 110 over 60 from 10 years ago. Recently two of my running buddies, who happen to be very strong athletes, have developed hypertension; this surprises and worries me. Without a lot of salt, my training schedule makes me very lethargic. Can my sodium intake be harmful? How often should I check my blood pressure? I am a bit of a type-A personality and have had trouble sleeping, plus hot flashes hot flashes Hot flush Gynecology A symptom afflicting 80-85% of middle-aged ♀, first occurring during the perimenopause, continuing with ↓ intensity for yrs, manifesting itself as transient waves of erythema and uncomfortable warmth beginning in the associated with menopause. I really wish to avoid developing hypertension.
With a blood pressure of 120 over 75 and clearly a salty sweater, you are doing the right thing and should not worry unless you actually develop hypertension.
Athletes sweating in the summer sun should not abide by the dietary guidelines dietary guidelines Cardiology A series of dietary recommendations from the Nutrition Committee of the Am Heart Assn, that promote cardiovascular health. See Caloric restriction, food pyramid, French paradox. established for sedentary adults: 2,300 milligrams of sodium daily. This equates to a teaspoon of table salt a day. As internist internist /in·tern·ist/ (in-ter´nist) a specialist in internal medicine.
A physician specializing in internal medicine. for the Oklahoma Sooners The University of Oklahoma features 17 varsity sports teams. Both men's and women's teams are called the Sooners, a nickname given to early Oklahoma land rush pioneers. They participate in the NCAA's Division I-A, in the South Division of the Big 12 Conference. , I have found some OU football players, during two-a-day workouts, to lose five teaspoons of salt a day. Heat cramping cramping
see cramp. and exhaustion result from lack of sodium. Never drink more than you sweat. Overdrinking, even fluids with sodium, can dilute blood sodium. If you gain weight during a long run, drink less next time.
If you see salt on your skin or clothing or sweat burns your eyes, you may need more salt than most people during a workout in the sun. Foods with lots of sodium include tomato juice, canned soup Canned soup is soup that comes packaged in a can. It can be condensed, in which case it is prepared by adding water (or sometimes milk), or it can be ready-to-eat, meaning that it only needs to be warmed. Canned soup can be prepared by heating in a pan or in the microwave. , pickles Pickles may refer to
Randy Eichner, MD
As noted above, your desire for salt seems like your body's appropriate response to your exercise regimen. You might obtain a home blood pressure monitor at your local pharmacy and monitor it twice a week. Keep a diary of these readings to be sure you're on the right dietary track. While excess sodium does carry the risk of hypertension, the dangers of hyponatremia--dangerously low blood sodium--are worth reading up on as well.
Lloyd Lense, MD [check]
Old Field, NY