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Problems for human health associated with excessive use of salt

Salt is an essential ingredient of modern dietary practices, and you can find salt shakers on every table if you go out for eating at a restaurant. Salt or sodium chloride is primarily composed of sodium and chloride. In salt, sodium is present at around 40% by weight. Sodium is essential for the human body as it controls the blood volume and blood pressure in the body. In addition, salt enhances the food’s taste and also provides the body with the required quantity of salts. Have you ever imagined your diet without salt? It will certainly be a tasteless situation. Salt is used as a flavor enhancer but some people have to stop consuming it due to their habit of consuming excess salt, a habit which can lead to extreme problems for your health.
Some people have a habit of adding extra salt even when the food already has sufficient amount of salt. You must have noticed people shaking the salt and pepper shakers too often while having their meals. But this habit is not healthy as consuming excess salt can lead to some serious health condition.

Hypertension: If consumed in large quantity, this consumption of salt can lead to hypertension because of the sodium present in salt (sodium chloride). Hypertension, in turn, pressurizes the heart, something which is a threat to the normal functioning of the heart. One of the major risk factors for heart failure and other problems such as arterial aneurysm, stroke, myocardial infraction, and a leading cause of chronic kidney failure is persistent hypertension. Moderate increase of arterial blood pressure may also lead to shortened life expectancy. That’s why, hypertension patients are advised to cut down the quantity of dietary salt.

Cardiovascular diseases(CVD): Excess consumption of salt can also lead to cardiovascular diseases(CVD) and increases the risk of strokes and asthma. A high amount of dietary salt leads to the thickening of the arteries which hampers the natural flow of blood towards the heart, thereby increases the chances of cardiac failure. It is now scientifically proved that people who excessively consume salt on a daily basis are more likely to suffer from renal functional failure than others who don’t.

Obesity and Osteoporosis: In women, excess intake of common salt reduces the bone density which can lead to osteoporosis. Obesity is one more disorder that occurs due to excessive consumption of salt because of improper breakdown of sodium. High amounts of sodium is deposited in the stomach which can also cause stomach cancer if it remains for longer periods.

How to reduce salt consumption?
Our taste for salt is a habit. Gradually lower the amount of salt in diet and your taste will begin to change. After some time, food will begin to taste better without salt or less salt. Reductions of salt intake can be done in a number of ways :

Avoid using excess table salt while cooking and use spices instead which contains salt in them.
Avoid directly adding salt to food.
Do read package labels to learn about the sodium content of prepared foods while shopping food.
Keeping in mind all these harmful effects caused due to the excess consumtion of salt, it is advised to minimize the amount of salt to a moderate quantity. One should refrain from consuming salt in excess amount to live a healthy life.

Prescribed amount of salt: You very often add a pinch of salt to vegetable pinch of salt to your vegetable might quickly add up to unhealthy levels of sodium. Doctors say, moderate amount of salt consumptions on daily basis should be about 1¼ spoon which equals 500mg per day.

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