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Reduce sodium intake for a healthy life - Eat less salt

BY: JNLakshmi | Category: Health and Fitness | Post Date: 2008-10-16

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Sodium is one of the vital minerals in our body and every body requires certain amount of sodium to live. The common form of sodium intake in our day to day life is salt. The major function of sodium in our body is to balance the water content both within the cells as well as outside the cells in our body. So it really matters, when the sodium level is less or more that the required amount in the body. The Recommended daily dose for sodium for adult is 2,400 to 3,000 mg.

Sodium is required in certain amount to regulate the functions of the body. When it low, it causes low blood pressure, heart palpitations, muscle cramps, feeling lethargic, and dehydration. Severe sodium deficiency also causes brain damage. Sodium is essential for the muscle contraction, specially the heart. It also regulates body's acidity. Actually, unwanted quantity of salt is excreted through urine. That is, it helps remove toxins from your body. It is helpful in the nerve transmissions. Harmful symptoms arose only when, it is more excess, that the body cannot take it anymore.

High sodium effects:
Intake of too much sodium causes greater retention of water inside body, that leads to volume overload and High blood pressure. It also places extra strain on the blood vessels that dilate to regulate blood pressure which results in the risk of high blood pressure. High sodium increases the risk of diabetes, damages the liver, produces kidney stones, causes ulcer and makes a person obese. This is also a reason for acne prone skin.

High sodium foods:
Cutting down table salt, separately during your servings, is not the only way to reduce sodium intake. Sodium is naturally present in varying levels in almost all the foods we eat. Fresh foods like grains, fruits, vegetables, meats, nuts, and dairy products contain little amount of sodium naturally. Even one cup of skim milk contains 127 milligrams of sodium in it. High sodium foods are generally the processed foods or the packaged and frozen foods. Also, high sodium is found in ketchup. Generally kids and even adults consume more ketchup almost with anything they eat. In that case, they unknowingly consume high sodium every day. So, taking into consideration the health reason, "ketchup with no sodium" is popular in the aisle of the stores. Every packaged foods likecanned soup, pickle, soy sauce, salad dressing all contain high sodium. Salted snacks like roasted peanut, cashew nut, chips, tortilla chips, salt biscuits all are high sodium. French frieshas high sodium. All carbonateddrinks or the soda's have sodium. All ready-to-eat foods like macaroni and cheese, frozen dinners have high sodium. Meats like bacon, beef, ham, sausage contain high sodium.

So, to reduce the intake of sodium, you need to cut down salt by adding it additionally on the cooked servings. Also, when ever you buy the food stuffs, read the ingredients label. Check for the sodium level. Opt for the ones that has 140 milligrams of sodium or less per serving.You will be eating several meals a day and so it adds up. Do not cut down sodium totally and live a tasteless life, it is just enough if you are little aware and eat the right foods. Fresh cooked foods, vegetables and fruits always carry ample health benefits. For general health and well-being, the low sodium diet is recommended.

Article Source: http://www.saching.com

About Author / Additional Info: JNLakshmi

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