Monday, 10 July 2017

What are the Effects of Eating too much Sodium and Salt?

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As is said “too much of anything is bad” well this is a true saying. Salt, a major constituent in virtually every meal we eat can pose a serious health issue when consumed in high quantity. It might not be a serious problem to young people so we say, but the truth is, it can result in serious health
problems in future. So regulating your intake of salt from now can be of help. Remember “a stitch in time saves nine”.  Certain groups of people are at higher risk of facing health challenges than others such as:
•    People over 50 years of age
•    People who have high blood pressure
•    People living with diabetes

What happens when you eat too much salt?

In most people, due to excess sodium, their kidney find it hard to function properly in regulating sodium in the blood stream. The more sodium we consume, the more we accumulate it, this accumulated sodium makes the body retain water for dilution. However, this very act increases the amount of fluid surrounding cells and the volume of blood in the bloodstream. Due to this, the heart will then come under stress increasing the pressure on blood vessels. Over some time, this increased pressure softens the blood vessels resulting in high blood pressure, heart attack, and stroke.

How important is potassium to the body?

Sodium and potassium have opposite effects on the heart and body in general. Too much sodium results in high blood pressure while potassium serves as a correction, it helps correct the effect of sodium.
The body needs more of potassium than sodium daily, however, most of our diets are more of sodium than potassium. There are natural sources of potassium that we can add to our diet. In the archives of internal medicine, a study was done recently that proves that diets with high salt content have a negative effect on health.
In the same study, it was shown that people with high intake of sodium are 20% liable to die from any cause, while, people with high intake of potassium are 20% lower of dying from any of this causes.

How do I reduce sodium intake?

Start early

High blood pressure is an issue that has its root from our childhood when you consume too much sodium now, you stand a greater risk of contracting high blood pressure, and so, cutting your intake of sodium now is key as might save your life. In fact, reducing sodium intake can become much difficult when you grow old than now. Take action, the time is now.

Eat little of salty foods
The point here is not about totally eliminating sodium from your diet, but to reduce its intake and this can be done by reducing the portion of salty food you consume daily. Instead of eliminating your favorite salty food, just reduce it.

Cook your own meals

People buy processed foods without knowing the amount of salt added, the best thing to do is to cook your own food it helps you control the amount of salt you consume. Moreover, use fresh ingredient while cooking coupled with vegetables with high potassium content.
Below are foods with high potassium content
•    Yam
•    Spinach
•    Potatoes
•    Sweet potatoes
•    Mushrooms
•    Broccoli
•    Pumpkin
•    Carrots
•    Okra

•    Sweet corn.

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