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What Happens When You Eat Salty Foods?

By Sara Butler

What really happens to your body when you dig into that bag of potato chips? Finish off that basket of fries? Slurp down that bowl of soup? Even eat a slice of cheesy pizza? All of these foods are known to be some of the saltiest around, so it's important to understand how salt, especially when eaten in excess, can impact your body.

The American Heart Association suggests that adults keep their sodium intake under 2,300 milligrams per day. But the average American consumes closer to 3,400 milligrams per day. How does this impact your body? Read on to find out.

You Tend to Drink Less

It may seem counterintuitive to think you'll drink less water after eating something salty, but that's exactly what researchers have found -- in the long term, at least. Sure, after polishing off some potato chips you may reach for a glass of water, but in the long-term when your sodium levels are high, the less water you will drink. This is likely due to the fact that the body is conserving fluid when you have a lot of salt, which also means your body may demand more energy to function. That's to say, you may overeat when your sodium levels are too high and drink less water too, which is not great for you in the long run.

You're Bloated

Eating salty foods every day can also lead to an uncomfortable situation -- bloating. That's because your body is retaining water, something common in people who consume too much salt in their diets. This leads to uncomfortable feelings and even pain if you get really bloated.

Unhealthy Skin

If you're noticing that your skin is breaking out a lot, then it could be because of the amount of salt in your diet each day. Studies have found a correlation between the amount of salt someone eats and acne. So, if you're struggling with skin problems, then you may want to take a look at the foods you're eating.


Some studies have also found those with high-sodium diets may be more prone to headaches. In other studies, reduced sodium intake has been associated with fewer headaches in participants, which is thought to be due to the blood pressure of participants. If you have high blood pressure, then you may have more headaches, and high blood pressure can be caused by too much salt.

Salt is needed but it's easy to go overboard. Avoid overly salty foods in your diet for your continued health.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Mesa, Ariz.

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