Salt Wars

When preparing today’s meals and foods available in stores, a lot of salt is added for various reasons.  Some of these are mythical and some are tricks to preserve or as a flavoring agent.  And, most times these amounts are ok when cooking at home, but like everything, within reason

saltwars

Why?  Well, the amount of salt we consume has a direct impact on your body, affecting the kidney, blood pressure, heart, etc.  Too much will break the internal balance and put you at risk.

An unnecessary risk, and something that you can easily prevent.

Because of salt’s natural abilities, it makes your body retain water which in small quantities can be good for you (I guess) as it may prevent dehydration although it sounds silly and cannot be backed up with medical evidence 🙂

However, if you eat way to much salt, extra water will be stored in your body.  This will cause your kidney to work harder, and it will raise your blood pressure.  Again, neither you want to happen.

Your heart will be negatively affected too as there might be a slight reduction in the blood flowing through your heart.  Your attempts to compensate by beating faster, to regulate and correct reduction and that will exert your heart muscle … leading to heart failure.

With high salt consumption, your arteries will get strained and to counteract that, the arteries will thicken, and push blood through harder.  Over time, arteries will get weak and even burst.  Not a good combination!

The more salt you eat, the higher risk you are of having high blood pressure and heart failure.

It may seem scary at first when your doctor tells you, and when the doctor goes through the various side effects of salt, blood pressure and heart failure.  And it is scary to hear.

It forces you to rethink what you can do and how you can correct this.  You may even ask yourself “what can I do?” to reduce this risk.

Well, there are small steps you can take to reverse or correct this.  It just takes some willpower and adjustments in your daily food consumption.

Again, these seem easy on paper, but might be a little more complicated to actually implement.  BUT, it is totally possible and doable.

80% of the salt we eat every day is “hidden” in processed foods

Let’s also be clear, cutting down on salt is not just about reducing or removing salt from your cooking or on top of your meals, it is to actively watch the sodium content in the food we buy.

More importantly, we need to learn what is natural sodium and what is added.  By default, processed foods, cans, and other premade foods contain tremendous amounts of sodium.  As an example, shellfish (e.g. shrimps) have much higher sodium content than a salmon fillet.  Dried noodles have insanely high sodium counts, whereas fresher noodles have a very small amount.

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Read the labels to save yourself the concern.  Important note! labels show sodium content per serving, not the entire packages 🙂

Salt is ok but we have to monitor our salt intake and avoid eating more than 2000mg of sodium per day (not per meal).

YOu’ll be surprised how painless it actually is, and how quickly you get used to not having salt in your diet.

Initially, your food might seem a little bland.  However, the trick is to learn about new spices and how these will literally spice up your life.

Cayenne Pepper is your new friend.

How has your diet changes come along and have you been successful getting salt out of your life?

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