Limiting Your Sodium Intake

Do we really need to limit our sodium intake?

It's hard to shake the habit of reaching for the salt shaker. How harmful is this salty habit of yours and what repercussions does it have on your health? How can we kick the habit?

In the world of medicine, there are contradicting claims as to limiting salt in your diet. Some claim that everyone should be limiting the amount of salt in their foods. Others claim that this is not the case and not everyone needs to be conscious of how much salt they consume. So, what opinion is correct?

Generally, lowering sodium (the problematic component in salt) will lower a persons blood pressure. However, how much lowering one's sodium consumption affect them is really dependent on the person's genetic makeup, age and medical status.

Hpwever, many organizations, such as the American Heart Association recommend that everyone lower the amount of salt they consume in there foods. In reality, there is no one recommendation thatsuits everyone. Therefore, if you are under the age of 50, your health is good and your blood pressure is normal, you most probably have nothing to worry about regarding your sodium consumption. A low-sdoium diet is important for adults with high blood pressure, diabetes or are of African American descent. People in these categories should not have more than 2,300 - 2,400 mg of sodium a day. People suffering from heart or kidney diseases should have less than 2,000 mg a day.

Most people consume 2/3 of their daily salt intake from processed or prepared foods. If you need to limit your sodium intake make sure to read the labels carefully; pick low-sodium foods; limit the amount of frozen, prepared and processed foods; use herbs as a substitute to salt.