Salt: When is It Too Much?

Salty Hazards (Photo Credit: Healthyadjustments)
Salty Hazards (Photo Credit: Healthyadjustments)
Salty Hazards  (Photo Credit:  Healthyadjustments)
Salty Hazards (Photo Credit: Healthyadjustments)

Do you know that  an average adult should eat only about 1 teaspoon, or 5 grams of salt  in a day?

And do you know that there’s a  half teaspoon of salt on your double cheeseburger, two hot dogs, cup of canned tomato soup, 3-5 ounces of ham and on your favorite pizza even if it’s only one large slice of sausage or bacon pizza? And that eating all these in a day means eating more or less three teaspoons of salt?

You say,  “Oh no!”… We say,”oh, yes!”  And it’s not good for you!

Although sodium is necessary for muscle contraction and protects us from sun stroke, too much of it poses considerable risks to our health:

  • increases blood pressure because salt holds excess fluid in our body
  • higher risk for heart disease
  • combined with lack of fluids, salty food can cause kidney stones
  • complications that could lead to kidney damage

The kidney has to function properly in order to eliminate salt from the body.  When it fails to do so, dire consequences could follow. such as swelling of the face and appendages, shortness of breath and weakening of the heart muscle.

Pain and minor swelling could be indicators that you have taken  large doses of salty foods, so it is really best to eliminate or minimize consumption of  table salt, which is a favorite ingredient of many people,  We already have so much salt in fast foods and processed food and eliminating or minimizing use of it at home would be a good start towards lesser-salt-endeavors.  We should start refraining from frequent eating of fast food and strive to switch to vegetables, fruits, and fish meals especially when we have been experiencing above symptoms.   Monitoring our sodium intake is a sure way to avoid vicious cycle of unfavorable incidents.

Reducing the amount of salt we eat helps to reduce the amount of calcium in the urine which in turn reduces the tendency for calcium stone formation. The lesser we put salt in our food and by avoiding those high sodium foods such as processed meats, salty convenience foods like  boxed or canned soups, noodle or rice mixes and salty snacks, we have lesser risk of acquiring kidney stones.

Those with history of high blood pressure are strictly advised by doctors to avoid salt altogether or conform to very low-salt diet.  Those who want to prevent high blood pressure from developing should learn to monitor amounts of salt in their every food, especially if they are already above their average weight or, in a straight-forward word, in the category of obese people.

This addiction to salt by many people is so rampant and it’s no wonder that mortality rate is so much lower nowadays than many decades ago, when there were very few fast food chains, and packaged and processed food. Hypertension kills; let’s not take salty intake lightly.

Just in the US alone, 31.9 % of  non-institutionalized adults ages 20 and over were diagnosed with hypertension in 2009 to 2010.  Would we want to belong to that escalating percentage?

You say “NO?”

Then let’s start throwing all those junk food away from our line of reach! 

Web Sources:

hhttp://dherbs.com/articles/salt-30.html

http://www.saltinstitute.org/Uses-benefits

http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/HighBloodPressure/PreventionTreatmentofHighBloodPressure/Shaking-the-Salt-Habit_UCM_303241_Article.jsp

http://www.wisn.com/r/22405762/detail.html

http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/hyprtens.htm