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How Salt Adversely Affect Our Health

  • Category: Science
  • Subcategory: Chemistry
  • Topic: Salt
  • Pages: 2
  • Words: 1110
  • Published: 12 March 2019
  • Downloads: 60
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Is it healthy to add salt to your diet

Everybody love craving for tasty food. These foods satisfy our taste buds leaving traces of different tastes like salty, bitter, sour, sweet, pungent, and astringent. But, it all comes down to a healthy diet. Salt has become an essential element in our daily diet. Though it is regarded to be indispensable, yet there are few research facts made by various health organizations capable of giving you a nightmare.

Excess of salt intake can sabotage your cardiac system causing a number of health problems including a very high blood pressure and other cardiac diseases. Even though carrying out decades of research, all we could achieve was a stalemate between low and excess usage of salt. Let us have an insight about adding salt in our daily diet.


Sodium chloride or salt contains 40% of sodium and 60% of chloride by weight. The essential minerals available in the salt act as one of the important electrolyte in our body helping to balance fluids, nerve transmission, and muscle function.

Salt is used to flavor food but interestingly, it is also found naturally in most of the foods. It was used an eon ago to preserve food by ceasing growth of bacteria on the food. The modern implementation of this historic technique can easily be reflected in the canned food.

There are different types of salt available which vary based on their color, texture, and taste. Before you start thinking about which one is the healthiest, they are all similar.

How Does Salt Affect Heart Health?

Most of the health organizations suggest us to consume 2,300 mg of sodium daily. Anything more than that could be considered harmful to human body. 2,300 mg of sodium will be precisely equal to one tablespoon or 6 grams of salt. However, as per a survey, 70% of the adults consume more salt than the mentioned usage.

As per many medical specialists, consuming an excess amount of salt can shoot up your blood pressure level instantly and drastically. This unforeseen raise can increase the risk of heart diseases and stroke.

It is recommended to maintain a stable level of consumption as both low and high intake of salt have their own consequences. Reducing salt intake can also lower your blood pressure which raises new medical condition called salt-sensitive hypertension.

As per a study in 2013, the individuals maintaining a normal blood pressure lower their salt intake which reduced their systolic blood pressure by only 2.42 mm Hg and diastolic blood pressure by 1mm Hg. On a magnified scale, we can say that the blood pressure made a transition from 130/75 mm Hg to 128/74 mm Hg. It is not exactly a drastic change you would hope to see while enduring a tasteless diet.

However, there are studies which do not guarantee that limiting the salt intake can potentially reduce the risk of heart attacks, strokes, and other cardiac diseases. This is a complete insight into salt affecting your heart health.

Low Salt intake

Here are few of the evidence proving that a low salt diet can unconditionally harmful

  1. Elevated LDL: LDL (low-density lipoprotein) is a Cholesterol protein which can spread plague causing heart attacks and strokes. Normally, our body control level of LDL, but when we are on a low salt diet, it ignites LDL to elevate. This can potentially sabotage your heart health.
  2. Low Insulin Level: Some of the studies have also claimed that low salt intake can drop insulin level in the body and increasing insulin resistance.
  3. Diabetes: when you drop salt intake, the sugar level in the body rises. Following a low salt diet for a long time can risk diabetes. As per a research, type 2 diabetes patients often use less sodium which can cause an increased risk of sudden death.
  4. Heart disease: The normal or basic intake of sodium on daily basis is around 2,300 mg of sodium but anything less than that can raise the risk of heart diseases which could possibly lead to death.
  5. Heart Failure: Restricting or lowering salt intake increases a sudden heart failure which could possibly lead to death. 160% of deaths are caused due to salt intake only.

High Salt intake

Salt was used to preserve food because it never let moisture to be retained. This could also be taken as both advantage and disadvantage. When we consume high salt intake, our body gets an excess of sodium. The human body needs to be hydrated every day but the excess of salt intake can disturb this cycle. When there is a lot of salt present inside the body, water gets stored in cheeks and area around the waist making you look legitimately fat and chubby.

High salt intake can also cause stomach cancer which is 5th common occurring cancer throughout the world. It is responsible for more than 700,000 deaths every year. As per a survey conducted in 2012, about 68% chances of occurring stomach cancer are more for the people who include high salt intake in their diet than people who choose a low salt diet.

High salt intake encourages the growth of Helicobacter pylori, a bacteria which cause a sensation of inflammation in the stomach. This initially leads to form symptoms for the ulcer but then slowly turns out into stomach cancer.

However, only high salt intake is not responsible for stomach cancer because there could be several other factors that must be kept under consideration.

Salty Food

Salt was used for preserving the food but this raised a new cause for the health problem. Most of the processed food and canned food use excess of salt as a natural preserver. In fact, about 75% of the U.S population consumes processed food.

Salted snacks, instant soups, processed meat, pickled food, and canned food are the examples of food which have an excess of salt.

Ideal intake of the salt

Here are few of the recommendations made by popular health organizations

American Heart Association (AHA): 1500 mg

Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND): 1500 to 2300 mg

The ideal intake always gets controversial but adding salt to your diet is necessary. The intake may vary from person to person but a calculated intake of salt in the diet is the ideal intake.

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