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Sodium. How much is too much?

2 September 2009 40,075 views 4 Comments
 
How much Salt it too much?

Sea Salt does not contain Iodine.  Table salt or “Iodized” Salt does.

Sodium (salt) is the primary electrolyte in charge of regulating the extracellular fluid levels in the body.

 
Marais Salant; a natural salt pan in the bay of the Atlantic Ocean

Marais Salant is a natural salt pan in the bay of the Atlantic Ocean

Sodium is essential to achieve and maintain  proper hydration.  This mineral pumps water into our cells causing potassium to pump the by-products (waste) of the cellular processes out of cells, eventually eliminating toxins from the body.

It is suggested we only need to consume between 500mg and 750 mg of Sodium per day.  However, if you are an extreme athlete your daily sodium intake may increase to 2000 mg per day to insure proper hydration.

lablesAlways be sure to read the labels of what you eat and drink to see how much Sodium you are really consuming in a day.  You may be shocked!  Remember to look at the serving size of the item you are about to consume, often times packages contain more that one serving so the nutritional facts or Sodium, in this case, may need to be doubled or tripled.

It is equally important to be aware of  the sodium content of restaurant meals, especially fast food.  One Bacon Egg and Cheese Biscuit from McDonald’s contains 1270 mg of sodium, one hash brown contains 290 mg and if you enjoy Ketchup with that hash brown you can add another 100 mg of sodium per packet used. As you can see, ONE average fast food breakfast is well over the recommended DAILY amount of Sodium.  Consistently consuming a high Sodium diet will cause  the body to inefficiently metabolize which creates excess water in the blood stream; this causes the heart to work harder potentiality causing high blood pressure or even worse, heart disease.

tspSodium Equivalents

1/4 teaspoon salt = 600 mg sodium
1/2 teaspoon salt = 1200 mg sodium
3/4 teaspoon salt = 1800 mg sodium
1 teaspoon salt = 2300 mg sodium
1 teaspoon baking soda = 1000 mg sodium

Read more about Sodium: http://www.consumeraffairs.com/news04/2008/02/sodium_bp.html#ixzz0Q0jteiTR

4 Comments »

  • Carmelita W. said:

    This makes me think of the person that went into the diner and asked what the special was and was told that it was boiled tongue and cabbage. He exclaimed, ” I could not eat something that came out of a cows mouth, I’ll have some eggs,easy over.”

  • Elanor Rackliffe said:

    Hi there, I found your blog via Google while searching for first aid for a heart attack and your post
    looks very interesting for me.

  • Lily said:

    This morning my daughter and I had 2 slices each of turkey bacon, in which each slice contains 310 mg. that means for breakfast, we’ve already had 620mg. Almost our total consumption of sodium for the day. Is this too much?

    Thank you,
    Desiree

  • Amanda Powers L.M.T., N.C. (author) said:

    Hi Desiree,
    It is almost 1/2 of the 1,500 milligram daily allowance that I like to recommend.
    Sodium is difficult to avoid as it is found naturally in so many foods. For example:
    one large egg, has about the same amount of naturally occurring sodium as 3 ounces of broiled chicken or beef. One cup of cooked broccoli is equivalent to the same amount of sodium found in a 4-5 ounce filet of Halibut. This is even without adding any additional salt while cooking. It is important to avoid foods that are high is sodium for the rest of the day if the morning meal starts with half of the daily amount. I like to call them “free-foods”. Which means you can eat as much as you’d like which is why they are great for snacking or sides with any meal. This is the perfect time of year for raw snap peas and green beans or freshly baked (not pickled) beets. Jicama and organic celery can replace chips with Guacamole and any Cruciferous Green (leafy vegetables) like kale, mustard and beet greens or spinach make great salads or sautéed with fresh garlic accompany almost any meal. Remember High-sodium foods contain 400 milligrams of sodium or more in every serving. You can avoid these foods by avoiding processed and pre-made items such as cookies, crackers, chips and frozen or fast food meals. The rule of thumb is to consciously consume food in the organic and natural form that it grows and you will keep your body balanced. I even feel this way about Bacon. I would suggest “Applegate Farm’s” nitrite free, uncured bacon opposed to genetically modified Turkey Bacon. Turkey bacon is very processed, when was the last time you heard a Turkey say Oink?

    Hope that helps. Have a great day!

    Amanda Powers LMT, NC

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