People often use salt and sodium interchangeably, but they are very different. Sodium is a mineral and nutrient that is naturally occurring in foods or sometimes added during manufacturing. On the other hand, salt is a combination of sodium and chloride.
Sodium has several functions in the body including the maintenance of blood pressure, and transmission of nerve signals. Salt is needed for your body to function, but too much or too little salt can be harmful to your health.
According to Health Hub Singapore, the average adult consumes 9g of salt per day, more than the recommended 5g per day. Studies have shown that when salt intake is reduced to less than 5g a day, blood pressure can be lowered for lesser health risks.
What are some of the signs of excess sodium?
Having excessively high levels of sodium in the body can be a consequence of every-day activities such as eating an entire packet of chips while watching a movie.
Some signs of having eaten too much salt is bloating and water retention. You might feel slight discomfort and bloating, caused by a buildup of gas. You may also experience excessive thirst – this is because when salt is absorbed in your bloodstream, fluid is drawn out from your cells by the excess salt which triggers your body to require more water to balance the whole system.
What is fluid retention?
When sodium levels are too high or too low, this will lead to imbalances within the body and cause fluid retention. One indication of water retention is the difficulty to shed weight despite your efforts. You can also be looking at unexplained weight gain over a short period of time. Water weight is where your body retains fluids and it gets collected in your tissues, instead of going to the kidneys.
When there is too much salt in your diet, sodium actually binds with water and will keep it trapped in the body. Carbs can also have an impact on fluid retention. When your body don’t use it right away for energy, it will be stored as glycogen which pulls in more water. If you just started on your slimming treatment and diet, you may at first lose weight quickly. That can actually be the water weight from the loss of stored glycogen.
How you can manage the excess fluids in your body
There are several ways you can have more control over excess fluids in your system. Firstly, limit your salty food, especially processed foods. They contribute about 75% of your salt intake, since salt is commonly used as a preservative. It is best to cook whenever you can and use non-processed items like fresh vegetables. Embark on your weight loss journey with our HomeoDOPA Product Set to help with 2 weeks of skin and body detox with proper eating.
Besides drinking water, consume more hydrating foods that have high water content to help increase overall hydration levels in your body. Spinach, watermelon, and cantaloupe are among some of the fruits and greens that offer a lot of water content. Eat potassium-rich foods like potatoes, leafy greens and bananas to counteract sodium. Physical activity is also crucial to losing water weight, as you lose a little sodium through your sweat and ensures that you are constantly drinking more water.
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