A Few Salty Facts
By Sara Butler
Salt has a bad reputation – and for good reason. It deserves some serious scrutiny in the wake of the rise in high blood pressure and diabetes. But just how bad is salt? It’s essential for life – you just have to make sure to enjoy it in moderation. Here are a few salt facts you should keep in mind!
Some Salt is Good for You
Salt is needed by your body to function. It helps to regulate cell function, maintain blood volume, and send nerve impulses throughout your body. Your body is able to naturally regulate salt levels by making you thirsty and using water to flush your system.
A Lot of Salt Occurs Naturally
Salt is in the soil, meaning that it’s naturally occurring in many plants as they grow in soil and absorb it. According to the USDA, just a half cup of beets will provide you naturally with about 65 milligrams of salt. A medium stalk of celery has 32 milligrams. Just eight baby carrots will provide about 69 milligrams. Animal products also have naturally occurring salts. Three ounces of ground beef has 72 milligrams. Three ounces of chicken breast has 72 milligrams. So, as you can see, you get plenty of salt naturally in a healthy and balanced diet.
Some People are More Sensitive
Some people can eat a ton of salt and see no ill effects from it while others can look at a bag of potato chips and have their blood pressure rise. This is because some people are just more sensitive to salt than others. According to information from the American Heart Association, whether or not you’re sensitive to salt is genetic. It can also impact you if you have problems with your kidney function.
Salt sensitivity seems to be most prevalent in older people, those of African-American dissent, and people with chronic disease such as diabetes or kidney disease. Always make sure to check your blood pressure regularly, because salt sensitivity can happen at any time.
Salt Hides in Plain Sight
Some foods are pretty good at concealing just how much salt is in them. Often, these hidden sources of salt are the culprits behind too much salt in your diet. Cheese is a big problem since varieties such as feta, blue cheese, and processed cheeses are often full of salt.
Some processed chicken has also had a salt solution injected into it to make it appear plumper in the packaging. This adds more sodium in a place you probably weren’t expecting! Always make sure you check the nutrition information to see just how much salt is in your food!
The more you know about salt, the more you can make sure you don't get too much of it!
To learn more about your health and wellness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Denton, Tex.