Do you know all about too much salt? You actually need to eat some salt, just not too much salt that it raises your blood pressure! It seems like everyday the experts have a new opinion on the matter.
Our bodies need a certain percentage of sodium chloride to maintain daily functions however, too much salt in food and in your diet is also a recognized health risk and can lead to high blood pressure, heart attack or a stroke.
So how do you know how much is too much salt? Anything over the recommended daily amount of 6 grams is bad - one bag of crisps woudl normally be about 1.5g to put that in perspective.
The average daily consumption of salt used to be 9 grams, but the Department of Health has recently recommended that we reduce it to 6 grams, following tests that showed that this reduced blood pressure for the elderly and people who suffer from high blood pressure.
The 6 grams we need is roughly the amount found in large bag of crisps, a sandwich with non-processed chicken or tuna in it, and two biscuits. Most adults normally consume the equivalent of 4 bacon rashers, a large sausage, a large bag of crisps, a cheese sandwich and a half, and two biscuits.
Some ways to reduce your sodium intake are:
- Don't put it on your food. The amount used in cooking should be adequate for flavour.
- Avoid foods like fast food, processed meats, canned food and butter spreads that are high in sodium.
- Replace it with spices to add flavour in cooking.
- Buy low sodium condiments available on the market.
It's important to reduce your sodium intake even if you do not currently suffer from high blood pressure. This way you can protect yourself against future related problems.