Gold standard for assessing dietary sodium intake – Cardiology MCQ – Answer

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Gold standard for assessing dietary sodium intake

Correct answer:

2. 24 hour urine electrolyte estimation

24 hour dietary recalls may underestimate sodium intake by 4-34% and overestimate potassium intake by upto 16%. Unlike dietary recalls (self reported dietary intake data), urinary sodium excretion does no depend on accuracy of self report or food composition tables which may be inaccurate for different varieties of food. Generally 90 – 95% on ingested sodium is excreted in urine. Added errors in dietary recall methods include salt added at the table, non food sources like supplements, medications and tap water. In case of potassium, 77 – 90% of consumption is excreted in urine.


1. Jackson SL, Cogswell ME, Zhao L, Terry A, Wang CY, Wright J, Coleman King SM, Bowman B, Chen TC, Merritt R, Loria CM.Association Between Urinary Sodium and Potassium Excretion and Blood Pressure Among Adults in the United States: National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 2014. Circulation. 2018 Jan 16;137(3):237-246.

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