mainly through the hidden salt found in processed foods. Before we dive in, I want you to understand that salt itself isn’t bad.
It’s a mineral that your body needs to maintain a balance between fluids and sodium and also for you can do that by looking out for these 8 key signs. healthy muscle and nerve function,
so you don’t want to cut it out altogether. Instead, you want to make sure that you’re not eating too much and
#1. Let’s start with what most doctors consider to be the most obvious sign of taking in too much salt… high blood pressure.
Even though most of the medical community still continues to hold the stance that salt raises blood pressure some studies are starting to call this view into question.
But the current standpoint goes like this: The ideal blood pressure is 120 over 80. Anything over that is considered high.
A number of studies show that there’s a large association between the amount of salt you eat and your blood pressure and this association increases with age.
It works like this; When you take in too much salt, it makes it much harder for your kidneys to filter toxins and extra unwanted water and fluid from your blood.
The extra sodium in your blood pulls water out into your blood vessels. This excess volume of water in your blood vessels results in higher blood pressure,(1)
but it doesn’t just end there. All of this makes the blood vessels work harder, which cause their walls to get thicker. This further reduces the amount of space inside the vessels that are already full of extra water,
which also further reduces the amount of blood that gets to your organs, making your heart have to work even harder to circulate blood throughout your body.
And there you have a vicious cycle of high blood pressure that leads to heart disease. However, more recent research calls into question the link between sodium and increased blood pressure.
A 2017 study showed no link between salt and systolic blood pressure. In this study, participants who consumed less than 2,500 mg of sodium a day
actually ended up with higher blood pressure than those who consumed higher amounts. Other recent studies have found what is called a J-shaped relationship between sodium and high blood pressure.
That means that people with very high and very low sodium intakes both had high blood pressure.(2)
The people who consumed average amounts did not have high blood pressure. More research is needed before we can actually begin to rethink the link between sodium intake
and elevated blood pressure, but the American heart association still holds the view that too much dietary salt will raise blood pressure (2.5)
#2. Let’s move on to our next sign of too much salt which is bloating and swelling in different parts of your body, especially in the fingers, feet, legs, and ankles.
This is a condition known as edema. This causes the swollen areas to take on a shiny, stretched look.
As we’ve already seen, the body reacts to excess sodium intake by retaining more water to dilute the extra sodium.
This fluid retention leads to some spillover of fluid from small blood vessels and capillaries.
This excess fluid collects in the space in between the cells, leading to swelling and edema.
So if you’re noticing swelling or bloating it could be a sure sign of too much salt in your diet.
#3. The next sign is one that’s really simple to notice but is also really effective at pinpointing if you’re eating too much salt.
If the food you eat tastes bland and boring unless you douse it with salt you’re probably eating too much salt.
This is due to the fact that Your taste buds have become so used to salt that anything that isn’t really salted tastes off to you.
Your taste buds have basically developed a tolerance to salt so when you eat salty foods you can’t even taste the amount of salt you’re eating making you crave more salt. In this sense The taste of salt becomes addictive.
Researchers believe that, because it was so essential as a preservative, and because it was hard to find, our craving for it was a survival mechanism.
So, if you find yourself having to pour salt over everything you put in your mouth,
just to be able to enjoy it, it’s a pretty sure bet that you are eating too much of it.
#4. Another sign that you’re eating too much salt is that you’re getting frequent headaches.
This is a consequence of the pressure that the excess salt intake will put on your blood vessels.
When you take in too much salt, the volume of your blood expands. This causes the vessels, including those in your head, to slightly expand.
It’s believed that this dilation of the blood vessels that are also associated with high blood pressure is what leads to headaches.(3)
However, a recent study showed that a high salt diet can cause headaches even in people who do not have high blood pressure.
Before taking part In the study, all the participants were screened for normal blood pressure levels and then they were divided into two groups.
And the group that followed a low sodium diet had 30 percent fewer headaches than the group that followed a high sodium diet.
The researchers weren’t sure why salt causes headaches in people with normal blood pressure,
but they believed that the dehydrating effects of sodium may also be a contributing factor to headaches.So they recommended cutting back on the salt intake to help reduce headaches.
#5.Next up you want to look out for a constant feeling of thirst.
When you eat too much salty food, you’ll find yourself wanting to drink a lot more fluids throughout the day.
And the reason for this is because Your body is designed to balance out the amount of salt that you take in.
So, if you’re taking in too much salt, you’re body will try to get rid of the extra amount you don’t need by peeing it out.
In order for your body to bring sodium levels down, your brain will send signals that will make you start to feel thirsty
which will cause you to drink more water and that will cause you to make more frequent trips to the bathroom to flush it all out.
Another reason that salt makes you feel thirsty has to do with the make-up of salt. It’s 40 percent sodium and 60 percent chloride.
And the Sodium draws water away from your cells. So When you eat salty foods, your blood cells will absorb the excess salt.
The fluid surrounding your cells will become saltier and this excess sodium will draw the fluid out from inside your cells.
The cells will then send urgent messages to your brain that will cause you to drink more water in order to restore balance to the fluid levels throughout your body.
Ultimately this leads to a dry mouth and strong feelings of thirst. Processed foods that are High in salts like pizza, hot dogs,
and French fries are especially likely to make you want to drink more fluids.
#6. And this leads to our next sign which goes hand in hand with the last one. You need to go to the bathroom all the time.
Obviously, the increased desire to drink more fluids will cause you to have to go to the bathroom more frequently.
This can be annoying and can lead to a broken sleep pattern especially if you have to get up all-night-long to run to the bathroom.
Frequent urination can also affect your health. Every time you pee, you lose calcium. That calcium is essential for muscle contractions, transmitting messages between nerves, and releasing hormones, – So it needs to be replaced.
To solve this problem your body will take it from your bones. In extreme cases,
frequent urination due to too high of a salt intake could even contribute to osteoporosis.
#7. Moving on, Up next is a pain in your kidneys.
We’ve already learned that your kidneys play an important role in regulating the amount of fluid in the bloodstream.
They also remove waste products and control the production of red blood cells. But like I said when you eat too much sodium,
you’re putting your kidneys into overdrive as they work to restore the balance of electrolytes and fluids in your body.
Not only does This make the kidneys less effective at doing their job leading to increased blood pressure, and more stress on your heart,
but In extreme cases, this can lead to chronic kidney disease, which is an incurable condition. Excess sodium intake can also increase the amount of protein that’s excreted in your urine.
This, too, places extra stress on the kidneys. In fact, this is a major risk factor for developing kidney disease.
In one study, it was shown that reducing salt intake from 10 to 5 grams per day reduced urine protein excretion by almost 20 percent (4).
If you’re experiencing kidney pain, not only should you should get yourself to a doctor, but you may also want to take a look at your salt intake.
#8.Our final sign that you’re eating too much salt is that you’re experiencing brain fog.
If you’re experiencing mental confusion or memory loss, it could be because of the dehydration that is caused by too high of sodium intake.
This can negatively affect the way your brain works. Now even though this was an animal-based study, one study on mice that were fed a high salt diet led directly to cognitive impairment, dementia,
and reduced blood flow to parts of the brain that are associated with memory and learning. Also, Blood flow to the brain cortex was significantly reduced.
The reduction of blood flow to the brain cortex was shown to be related to less production of the gas nitric oxide. However, When the mice were returned to a normal diet the blood flow and the nitric oxide production increased.
Researchers found that high salt intake caused white blood cells to overproduce a protein called interleukin 17.
This protein is known to reduce nitric oxide production, and we need Nitric oxide to help dilate our blood vessels for greater blood flow(5)
Well, that’s it guys I really hope this tip has helped you out. Also, I want to mention that one of the best ways to reduce your salt cravings is the same way that you would reduce your sugar cravings.
And that’s by allowing for some time to reset your taste buds. By staying away from processed foods and by sticking to a healthy well-balanced diet, you’ll be able to get rid of most your desire for salt.
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