For a long time, mankind did without table salt simply because they were not familiar with it and, accordingly, did not eat it. Now few people can imagine their life without salt.
We are used to using salt when preparing first and second courses, appetizers, pickles, pastries, etc. We also always buy ready-made food with salt added.
In total, a decent amount of sodium chloride (edible salt) is accumulated per day. Does our body need such an amount of NaCl? How much salt does a person need to ensure normal life?
As can be seen from the chemical formula, speaking of table salt, we are dealing with two elements – sodium and chlorine, combined in one substance. Both macronutrients are essential for all mammals. Chlorine ions are used to produce hydrochloric acid in the stomach, while sodium is involved in the transmission of nerve impulses, is responsible for the proper functioning of muscles, regulates the water-salt and alkaline balance in the body, facilitates the transport of glucose and amino acids into cells, and maintains blood osmotic pressure.
According to the WHO (World Health Organization) recommendation, daily salt intake should not exceed 5 grams. This refers to the total amount of sodium chloride consumed in total per day from all food sources.
Gerontologist Alexei Moskalev in his book “120 years of life is just the beginning. How to beat aging? speaks of the maximum allowable dose of sodium chloride – 1 gram per day.
Excessive intake of sodium chloride reduces life expectancy mainly due to cardiovascular and kidney disease. Excess salt retains water in the body, which is associated with the development of hypertension, and contributes to a more prolonged course of inflammatory processes.
As a person ages, the level of glucocorticoid hormones increases, which contribute to the retention of sodium in the body. Therefore, it is especially important for older people to limit salt in their diet.
Salt shortens the length of telomeres (end sections of chromosomes), which are a marker of a person's biological age. The longer the telomeres, the younger the biological age of the individual.
Salting food has become a habit. But salt is not food, it has no nutritional value. There is no more reason to use table salt in cooking than any other chemical. But salt can bring a lot of harm! Sodium destroys the macronutrients it antagonizes.
One of the main dangers associated with salt intake is hypertension, which occurs due to excess fluid. After all, after salty you always want to drink.
Plentiful drink gives an increase in the volume of circulating blood. The load on the heart and blood vessels increases, the pressure rises. But that's only half the picture.
Sodium with water penetrates into every cell, including endothelial cells lining the walls of blood vessels, causing edema and reducing the lumen of blood vessels. The blood supply to all organs and tissues deteriorates.
To correct the situation, the body is forced to turn on additional reserves. He has a small arsenal of adaptive mechanisms, so he has to turn on the rapid work of the heart. There is tachycardia.
Due to the rapid work of the heart, the ventricles of the heart do not have time to fill in full. Portions of the ejected blood become smaller. A decrease in cardiac output is regarded by the body as a lack of blood in the general bloodstream, to which it is forced to respond with even greater vasoconstriction.
Since all the measures taken turn out to be walking in a circle and do not solve the problem of a full supply of blood to organs and tissues, the next command is given to the kidneys – to reduce the release of sodium to retain water in the body in order to increase blood volume. There is no way out of this situation. Problems are not solved. Hypertension occurs.
Eating table salt does not improve health or increase life expectancy. Therefore, the principles of health and longevity require the consumption of sodium chloride to be reduced to a minimum.
Even if you refuse to add salt to homemade food, you will receive salt in excess quantities by buying ready-made food, semi-finished products, cheeses, sausages, canned food, pickles and other food.
The body requires the macronutrient sodium, not the substance sodium chloride. The required amount of this element can be obtained from plant foods: greens, vegetables, fruits, berries, cereals, legumes, etc.
At first, for a while, food without salt will seem tasteless. But you can quickly get used to this. Over time, you will taste and enjoy the product itself, not the salt. The body will benefit a lot from this. How much salt does a person need? Approximately 0,5-1 gram per day will be quite sufficient.
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