Salt is used to make food as edible as possible as well as preserving food. In some parts of Asia, certain cultures don’t serve salt at the table. The belief is that the salt put into the food during preparation is good enough and even healthy. Most of us tend to crave salty foods or put a lot on our food. Think of that braai meat over the weekend or those nuts that most love to snack on. However eating too much salt, will cause extra water stored in your body thus causing a lot of health issues. One of the main challenges of too much salt is a rise in your blood pressure. The higher your blood pressure, the greater the strain on your heart, arteries, kidneys, and brain. This can lead to heart attacks, strokes, dementia and kidney disease. Read on and find out the 8 signs you’re eating too much salt.
1.You live on takeaways and processed food
Takeaways and processed food are high in salt. According to research most of these foods are high in salts such as cereal and tinned food. Try having more cooked meals with minimum salt used.
2. You find a lot of food tastes bland
When you find yourself not enjoying food especially naturally salty or savory food then you have a problem. Salt desensitizes your taste buds. Try to flavour your meals with strong-tasting spices and herbs like black pepper, cumin, rosemary and thyme.
3. You crave salty, savoury food
You might be having too much salt, if you find yourself craving salty snacks like crisps, peanuts and olives. You’ll enjoy your food so much more if you cut your salt.
4. You can’t think straight
Too much salt can have side effects on your brain.
5. Your are always thirsty
Foods with high amount of salt make you feel thirstier, because sodium messes with the balance of fluid in your body. Drink lots of water after a salty mealand consistently.
6. Your body is swelling in strange places
Sometimes you will find unsual swelling in your extremities. This is called edema, where there is swelling of extra fluid in your body’s tissues. Take periods of rest and ask your doctor or dietitian to recommend a diet that reduces edema.
7. You get kidney stones
A diet high in too much sodium can actually hinder kidney function. This leads to an increase in kidney stones. Check for signs and symptoms of kidney stones and set-up an appointment with the doctor.
8. You have high blood pressure
Your blood pressure will show that you are having too much salt if it’s higher than the normal range. The standard range is between 110/70 mmHG and 140/90 mmHG. The extra sodium increases blood pressure by holding more fluid in the body, making your heart pump harder. Control your sodium intake and have foods that help lower high blood pressure naturally.