Salt: Is Too Much Of Salt Unhealthy? What To Do If You Have Consumed Too Much Salt?

"Anything in excess is dangerous"

Salt contains around 40% Sodium and 60% chloride.

We generally use salt in our food to add flavor or to preserve the foods.

Salt being an essential nutrients, help body to maintain fluid balance (water and mineral) thus helps in proper functioning of the muscles.

It helps to maintain the nerve function.

Key ingredient in salt is Sodium.

Despite giving only taste to food, sodium regulate the blood flow and blood pressure and regulate the electrolytes that helps the brain to transmit messages between nerve and muscle fibers.

While chloride help in digestion.

The food you take should have enough salt in order to replenish the nutrients to keep you healthy.

It also stimulates adrenal gland, reduces sun strokes and maintain the amount of other minerals in the bloodstream.

How Much Of Salt Is To Be Taken?

On an average approximately 2400 milligram of salt per day is required, that is equivalent to one teaspoonful  of table salt (sodium chloride) 

Make sure it should not be less than 1500 milligrams.

What If You Have Consumed Excess Salt?

Consuming too much salt may cause negative consequences in the body and affects the health system badly.

Having too much salt can be poisonous and causes increase in sodium level.

Too much sodium in the blood stream will cause water to rush out of cells and dilute it. 

Damages cells including brain cells.

Thus causes shrinkage of blood vessel and fluid buildup in the brain leading to seizures and coma.

When fluid gets build up in the lungs it causes trouble in breathing.

Signs Of Excess Salt Consumption

⛔Feel Bloated and Constipation

You feel frequent bloating as too much of sodium can cause your body to retain water. Thus the water content in intestine and stool move towards other parts of the body to maintain fluid balance. So you feel constipation. This is because your body tries to maintain the specific sodium to water ratio. Sometimes you might get swelling especially in hands, feet and feel uncomfortable. 

 ⛔Frequent Headache 

Due to fluid imbalance, Headache occurs.

 ⛔ Feel Thirsty 

Consuming a lot of Sodium signals body that it needs more water to maintain fluid balance and you feel thirsty all the time. Hyponatremia, excess  sodium in the blood occurs which is caused by dehydration or not drinking enough of fluid. Your muscle gets twitched and even  feel seizures.

 ⛔High Blood Pressure

It is very common that excess salt leads to high blood pressure. Salt causes imbalance of fluid by attracting water from our body and pulling excess fluid into the bloodstream. This damages blood vessels and create blood clot and causes higher risk of stroke or heart attack. Old age people are more likely to experience high blood pressure due to excess salt intake.

⛔ Stomach Ulcer

 High Sodium intake causes inflammation of stomach, leading to stomach ulcer and sometimes stomach cancer.

 ⛔Trouble Sleeping

Fluid retention associated with excess sodium intake makes you feel uncomfortable and cause sleep apnea. Excess fluid settles in the upper part of the body and may worsen the condition for those with sleep apnea. Also causes more frequent nightmares and inability to sleep.  Excess water retention also causes frequent urination that make you awake and feel less rested after sleep.

⛔Frequent Urination 

High Sodium intake from diet causes frequent urination because of excess water being pushed into the bloodstream. Every time you urinate causes lose of calcium, which makes your bones and teeth weaker. Sometime exacerbation of osteoporosis might also occur.

 ⛔Craving For Salty Foods

By regularly eating high salt makes your taste buds to get adapted to salty flavor. Hence, you crave for the salty food  over and over again 

Remedy For Excess Intake Of Salt.

There are few ways which helps to compensate the excess intake of salt.

 ⛔Drink Lots Of Water

In order to regain the desired salt to water ratio, drinking plenty of  water is very beneficial and useful. Here in this case, drinking water in excess sodium intake will help to remove sodium from the kidneys that provide relief from bloating and makes you  hydrated and also flush out toxins from the body.


Sweating out will cause flushing of around 500 milligrams of salt. Although exercise in high temperature produce more sweat and salt, but may lead to heat stock, which can be fatal.  Some intense exercise like the running and hard body weight workout will sweat you more. Hence, helps in more  sodium loss in the form of sweat. Also make sure you are hydrated along with exercise.

 ⛔ Food Rich In Potassium

Potassium  counteract the effects of excess sodium. Foods like Banana white beans, green leafy vegetables are rich in potassium which counteract the negative effect of sodium in the body. These foods are naturally low in Sodium. Potassium also lowers blood pressure. Potassium also maintains fluid balance along with sodium. Monitoring of potassium in case of kidney patient is needed.

 Using "Healthy" Salt Option

 Sea salt  have a different element to make up as table salt, which can be a better option.

Reducing The Amount Of Salt In The Diet/Meals

About 70-80% of the salty comes from processed food and even from restaurant meals. Try to have fresh, minimally processed or unprocessed food in your diet/meal. This the best way to reduce the amount of sodium.

Foods like chips, meats, salted nuts, canned foods (beans, vegetables, soups) have high salt. Even salt is added as preservative or as flavor in pre-packages foods. 

Do minimize the intake of these foods.

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