At the request of the European Commission, EFSA has evaluated the available data on sodium with the eventual aim of updating the existing DRVs for adults (at the time not including pregnant or lactating women) set by the SCF in 1993 (an acceptable intake (AI) range of 0.575-3.5 g/day) and setting new DRVs for children. The Panel reviewed dietary sources of sodium, its absorption, distribution, metabolism and excretion, its biochemical function (with regard to sex and age), its interactions with other nutrients (including potassium, chloride and calcium), and the health consequences of deficiency and excess. The current (draft) report does not provide any new or revised DRVs, but EFSA noted that increased blood pressure, cardiovascular disease and bone health may be critical endpoints to consider in deriving such values. For pregnant or lactating women, the adaptive nature of sodium homeostasis indicated that the general DRV for adults should be adequate. For other subgroups (e.g. children over 6 months), new DRVs may be appropriate. The consideration of whether new DRVs for sodium can be set based on nutrient intakes by groups of apparently healthy people (and the process by which this can be attempted) is currently open for public consultation.

European Food Safety Authority (2017). Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA). Dietary reference values for sodium.

Annex A – Draft protocol for sections 5.5 and 6 of the scientific opinion on DRVs for sodium: Assessment of the relationship between sodium intake and pre-specified health outcomes, including dose-response relationships, and integration of different lines of evidence for setting DRVs for sodium.


The above items were taken from the November 2017 issue of Toxicology and Regulatory News which is sent automatically to members of bibra.

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