Nutrition

Salt: Watch out for excess!

Too much salt intake is bad for your health. Indeed, an excess of sodium would help raise blood pressure because it causes water retention, especially in overweight or obese people. And untreated or poorly treated high blood pressure is a major risk for heart disease, kidney failure, and stroke.

Excess salt absorption would also promote osteoporosis as it would increase the elimination of calcium by the kidneys. Indeed, the elimination of excess salt in the body tends to reduce the potassium and calcium reserves that are essential to the skeleton and the proper functioning of the muscles.

Salt sensitive people

Some people are more sensitive to the harmful effects of excessive salt intake. It's the case for :

  • type 2 diabetics,
  • people with metabolic syndrome,
  • old people,
  • heart failure.
  • renal insufficiency.

Reduce your salt intake

Here are some practical and simple tips to put in place daily to reduce your salt intake:

  • To reduce salt consumption, it is advisable not to resale its plate, so do not put salt on the table!
  • Do not buy industrial cooked meals too often, as they are often too salty.
  • To enhance the taste of your dishes, prefer spices, herbs or spices ... salt.
  • Eat fruits and vegetables rich in potassium that counter the harmful effects of sodium.
  • Favor seasonal fruits and vegetables with flavor.
  • Avoid consuming too often cheese, cold cuts, cakes appetizers ...
  • Read the labels of the foods you buy. 400 mg of sodium correspond to 1 gram of salt.

It is important not to accustom children to the taste of salt and limit their consumption of crisps, biscuits and cakes appetizers. Indeed, excess salt during childhood could predispose them to high blood pressure. Instead, offer them foods rich in vitamins and potassium such as a banana.

In contrast, strictly salt-free consumption, even in people with high blood pressure, is not recommended. This may be indicated in quite rare cases of very advanced heart failure.

To read also:> Salt and health: what you need to know
> Quiz: True / False on the salt
> New WHO guidelines on salt and potassium in food

Sources:
- National Agency for Food Safety, Environment and Labor. 2013 data.
- National Committee for the Control of Hypertension, 2013.

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