Salt Intake

The importance of limiting dietary salt intake has been emphasized for years.  Most would agree that a limit in the total amount of salt consumed, particularly in the presence of high blood pressure, heart and/or kidney disease is important.  It may be of some controversy to a few because its effects are not immediately obvious (unless you just ate 6 pounds of fried rice). A recent study showed that a 3 gram per day reduction in dietary salt would significantly reduce mortality and new cases of coronary heart disease, stroke, and heart attacks, and save more than $10 billion per year in our country alone. The cardiovascular benefits would be similar to those seen for reductions in tobacco use, obesity, hypertension, and cholesterol levels.  While it is true that the majority of people while young do not need salt restriction for medical reasons, it like the rest of your diet will eventually catch up with you.  Salt is an acquired taste.  Enjoy it when you are 15 and you will still be a great fan when you are 60, when your doctor will be imploring you to cut back on it.  Salt, much like exercise and limits on sugar and fat intake are lifestyle related.  The simplest way to decrease your intake is by limiting processed foods and don’t ‘snow’ you foods. Practice a safe life now – it makes it a lot easier later.   


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