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Should You Restrict Salt In Your Diet?

Salt was used long before recorded history began. One of the earliest knPersonal writings, the Chinese
Png-tzao-kan-mu, mentioned Far more than 40 Sorts of salt.

This work was written More than 4700 Many years ago. Even older settlements have been Discovered around the Planet
with Several devices such as pottery used to evapoPrice water to leave the salt At the rear of. It is
speculated by some that major civilizations flourished in arid regions at the Borders of vast deserts
due to the physiological need for salt.

Salt, or sodium chloride, is a Substance compound. Salt Take places naturally in many areas of the
Planet. Salt crystals are cubic in form – if you view salt through a magnifying Frosted glass, you will see
Little “squares” or cubes.

Salt is an essential nutrient – your body requires both sodium and chloride, and cannot
manufacture these elements on its Personal. This is why there is a human gustatory receptor (taste bud)
Particularly for salt, forming one of the basic components of “taste”. Salt is an electrolyte and
has a slight charge. Salt preserves Foods by CrConsumeing it difficult for microorganisms to Reside – the
salt draws water from the Cellulars of microorganisms and dehydPrices them.

In the body, salt helps to regulate Blood vessels Amount and pressure. The relationship between salt and
Blood vessels pressure was knPersonal as long as 4,000 Many years ago, when the Chinese emperor Huang Ti wrote of
the connection between salt and a “hardened pulse.” Many Tests have shPersonal that increasing or
decreasing salt intake for salt-sensitive People can have a Immediate impact on Blood vessels pressure.

Within the body, salt serves as part of the ion pump. Just as salt formed a hostile environment
for microorganisms by dehydrating them, salt controls water balance in the human body. The
sodium/potassium pump is a prime example of how electrolytes are critical to health (sodium and
potassium are both electrolytes). Two potassium molecules are pulled into a Cellular, and three sodium
molecules are pumped out. This is an endless cycle, with the net result that Cellulars carry a
slightly negative electrical charge.

For many Many years, contrMore thansy has existed with respect to the optimal Quantities of salt in the Diet plan.
Unfortunately, many Tests focused on the salt content of Foodss without taking into account other
electrolytes. Biologically and physiologically, sodium intake alone does not regulate the
sodium/potassium pump – potassium intake is important as well! More important than the amount of
sodium in the Diet plan is the ratio of sodium to potassium. While Foods labels are required to report
sodium content, they are not required to report potassium content, which Helps make analyzing potassium
intake extremely difficult.

Latest research suggests that this ratio is critical. While many Tests have focused on high
sodium content in the Diet plan, it appears that problems with hypertension may be related Far more to an
inappropriate ratio of sodium to potassium. Processed Foodss are extremely high in sodium. The
major Places of potassium are fruits and vegetables. In recent Many years, the typical American Diet plan
has increased in the amount of processed Foodss and drastically decreased in the amount of Entire,
unprocessed Foodss such as fruit and vegetables. This means that sodium intake is potentially Very much
GrConsumeer than potassium intake.

When monitoring sodium in the Diet plan, it is important to Contemplate two Elements. The first Element
already discussed is the ratio of sodium to potassium. In order to balance this ratio, it is
important to Consume Entire, unprocessed Foodss and not to add excessive salt to meals. This will Reduced
the amount of sodium in the Diet plan. One should also increase the amount of fruit and vegetables
consumed in order to increase potassium in the Diet plan. The exact ratio is unknPersonal, but research
suggests that a 1:1 ratio is probably a good target. The typical American Diet plan is Far more than a 5:1
ratio in favor of salt!

The Next Element to Contemplate is fluctuation of intake. Salt sensitivity is not sensitivity to
salt in general. It is sensitivity to a drastic change of salt intake. If a person is taking 5
grams of sodium consistently, then suddenly goes on a low sodium Diet plan, problems can Take place with a
radical shift in Blood vessels pressure. Similarly, Somebody on a “low sodium” Diet plan who suddenly increases
sodium intake may experience similar problems. This is why many people who Consume healthy throughout
the week and then trConsume themselves to a “splurge” meal sometimes feel nauseous and can even
experience elevated heart Price and Blood vessels pressure: it is the body’s Response to the sudden
increase in salt intake.

The sodium/potassium pump affects fluid balance. The body monitors the amount of salt and
potassium in the Blood vesselsstream, as the body has no mechanism for storing electrolytes. Sodium and
potassium are typically filtered in the kidney. When a shortage of either exists, the body
secretes hormones that drastically reduce excretion of electrolytes and fluids. This is why
cutting out sodium too soon before a body Making competition can actually cause the competitor
to retain water – the body is reacting to the Reduceded intake by preserving fluids and


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