How Dangerous Is Salt For Your Health?

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Bringing out the flavor

For thousands of years, salt has been highly prized by all cultures and continents. It has been used mainly as a condiment to bring out the flavor of foods, and until recently, no thought was given as to whether it was healthy or not.

However,  back in the 1970’s, a researcher in the field of hypertension, Dr Lewis Dahl, conducted an experiment whereby he fed rats 500 grams of sodium, which is about 50 times the usual daily consumption of humans.

This induced high blood pressure in the rats, which was then established as proof that salt causes hypertension. Conventional health care experts have ever since been recommending salt and sodium restriction to prevent hypertension.

 

How we consume salt

The World Health Organization recommends no more than one teaspoon of salt per day, which is about 2300 milligrams, or 6 grams. Salt in food is an acquired taste, but you do not have to be adding salt to your food or you’ll  be eating too much salt. Most of the salt we eat in fact, up to 75%, is already in foods we eat every day, including bread products , breakfast cereals, and ready-made meals.

Studies have shown that too much salt can raise your blood pressure and put you at an increased risk of heart disease and stroke. High blood pressure has no symptoms, but it is interesting to note that sodium is not the main culprit when it comes to the development of hypertension.

It is well known that obesity, a very unhealthy diet, and poor lifestyle habits, such as lack of exercise, and heavy smoking, are much more dangerous to the cardio-vascular system than salt.

However, if you are suffering from high blood pressure then cutting down on salt, whether it be the salt added at the table or in cooking, or in certain every day foods, would be the wise way to go so as not to increase the risk of raising your BP.

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