Salt is one of the essential ingredients to most of the food items and apart from being able to make food tasty it is also important for your health. Salt helps provide Sodium which is required for proper functioning of our body however that requirement is quite low. Too much of Salt just like anything else is not good for health but despite this fact there have been few myths around Salt and its effect on our health. In this article we debunk 5 common myths about Salt.
As we know Salt is essential for us and is the primary source of Sodium required by our body but how much Salt is really good for us. In various medical studies it has been found that eating too much of Sodium is responsible for various health issues. Too much Sodium increases your blood pressure and raises your chances for heart disease and stroke.
In present world heart disease and stroke are one of the primary reasons for most deaths each year. Lately the inclusion of large amount of processed food has increased the amount of sodium consumed by an average person.
With doctors and medical practitioners calling out heavily on the health issues caused by Salt there have been many misconceptions that have also gained traction in recent times.
With many different types of salts launched in market, claims leading to certain type of Salts being more healthy than other have also gained momentum.
Therefore let us check about 5 common myths about salt and what you should actually do to keep yourself healthy.
Himalayan Salt is better for you
One of the most popular common myth about Salt in recent times is that Himalayan Salt is better for your health.
While it is true that Himalayan salt and some other form of salts may include additional minerals as impurities, these minerals are present in very small quantity.
Ideally to gain any benefit out of the impurities present in Himalayan salt or similar type of salts you would have to consume it in large quantity.
Since, Sodium is the primary component of Salt hence consuming Salt in large quantity increases your Sodium intake and is certainly not good for your health.
A better way to get necessary minerals is therefore not salt but by including more vegetables and fruits in your diet.
Food with high quantity of Salt tastes Salty
Many food items available in market contain different ingredients, many of which easily balance out the salty flavour.
This increases your chances of consuming more Salt and in turn Sodium more than recommended
Some such foods that have large amount of Salt are – Savory, Butter, Sauces, Corn flakes, Bread etc. If you can see some of these food items may not taste salty at all.
One another way to find out is to check the food labels as it contains information such as amount of salt and if it is over the recommended reference intake.
If you have high blood pressure due to too much Salt, you will know it
Most people with high blood pressure do not show any symptoms until it is too late. It is therefore recommended to do regular blood pressure checkups to keep it in check.
In case you have high blood pressure, reducing consumption of Salt along with moderate physical activity and reducing stress may help with your condition.
Remember improving your lifestyle and eating habits may pay you well in long run.
Read more – Understand the secrets of Body Mass Index.
Any and all Salt is just bad for you
Human body requires salt to balance fluids in the blood and maintain a healthy blood pressure. It is also essential for muscle and nerve functions. Therefore, some amount of Salt essentially Sodium is required to keep you healthy.
So is Salt bad for you? Well the simple answer is no but yes it should be consumed in limited quantity. Food containing more than 1.5 g of Salt per 100 g of it is considered high in Salt and should be avoided.
Old people need to worry about how much salt they eat
Eating too much salt can raise blood pressure at any age. Due to lot of people going for processed food these days, high blood pressure concerns among kids.
As per CDC 1 in 9 children has higher blood pressure due to increase in Sodium consumption. To ensure better health for children, parents should focus on lowering Sodium intake for their child.
So the simple answer is – Not just old people but everybody needs to worry about excess salt in their food and plan to cut down its consumption to safer level.
The key takeaway for readers is to understand that Sodium is the primary factor which may lead to health issues such as blood pressure, stroke and heart diseases.
Hence, cutting down on Salt and other means of Sodium should be the plan.
Cutting down on all Salt and Sodium may not be helpful since our body requires small amount of Sodium for healthy functioning.
As a consumer, believing in claims such as Sea Salt or Himalayan Salt is better over a Table Salt is certainly not going to help you either and now you know why.
While the claim about Himalayan salts, Sea Salt etc being different from each other is not completely false but the facts around better health due to mineral content is certainly exaggerated.
The key to good health is right information and following a healthy lifestyle. Stay healthy and hit hard on false information.