Why Too Much Salt is Dangerous for You

By Refadoc, Posted on : Monday, 19 May 2014 - 7:14 am IST

After viewing the television ad about the importance of iodine and sodium in our everyday food, it does not seem that too much sodium could prove to be a bad thing for us. However, here is the reality check; too much of everything is bad. Though Sodium is known to be an integral part of our everyday diet, too much of it can lead to serious health problems. Sodium, which is known to facilitate the balance of the fluids in body and the transmission of the nervous impulses, is the major compound in the salt that we consume as a part of our diet.

Sodium Chloride, as a part of a compound forms around 40% of the constituent of the table salt which we consume. It is utilized by the body in order to maintain a proper fluid balance. Also, it is an integral component for the prevention of dehydration. However, when the intake of sodium increases more than the amount required by the body, the kidneys start removing it via urination. In the case of an excessive amount of sodium in body, the blood volume will be increased and therefore, the pressure on the walls of the blood vessels will be increased, causing a condition known as high blood pressure.

This eventually causes extensive damage to the walls of the blood vessels and decreases their elasticity, leading to the hardening of the arteries, thus increasing the chances of a heart attack and stroke.

Scientific research has determined a particular limit of sodium intake for every person. The recommendation says that a person should not be taking more than 2.4 grams daily, which comes out to be an equivalent of 6 grams of table salt or 1 teaspoon. For people who are prone to diabetes or high blood pressure, the amount is determined to be 1.5 grams daily which comes out to be 2/3 teaspoon of table salt daily.

It is recommended to use herbs and spices rather than salt in order to enhance the flavour of food for people who are suffering from high blood pressure. Also, processed and packed food products that have a high salt content should be avoided. Salty condiments such as soy sauce can be replaced by their lower sodium counterparts. Rinsing of processed vegetables before serving also reduces the amount of salt in them.

Keeping a tab at your salt consumption is going to ensure that you lead a healthy and balanced life. 

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