Is Salt Healthy?
Is Salt Healthy or Not?
As usual, it depends, but generally speaking salt/sodium is incredibly healthy and a vital nutrient for overall healthy function.
That being said, it’s always worth checking with your doctor about what’s right for you if you have specific medical conditions like high blood pressure, kidney stones, etc. that would require special consideration.
There are a few important things to keep in mind when it comes to salt:
1. Where do we get it in our diets?
-Almost all the sodium in the modern diet comes from hyper-processed foods that are meant to be shelf stable until the apocalypse and to taste better because of the sodium in them.
-It’s this type of sodium from hyper processed foods that is problematic NOT real whole food with added real salt for seasoning
-Unlike potassium, there’s very little sodium in most real whole foods. Where’s the sodium in beef, kale, an apple, etc?
-Yes there are some that have more than others, like celery, but most of our sodium needs to come from salt.
2. How much should you get?
-3-6g a day is what has been shown in the published research literature to be most effective for heath outcomes. This equates to 1.5-3 teaspoons a day
-This is quite a bit higher than the standard recommendation of 1.5-2g a day
3. What kind should you get?
-Celtic Sea Salt or Redmond real salt
-Ideally avoid hyper-processed salts
4. How do you incorporate it?
-Season your food with it. Any chef will tell you salt is an integral part of good cooking
-You can also add finishing salts at the end of cooking to bring out saltiness if that’s what you like
-Generally speaking, salting your food before it’ cooked just naturally enhances its flavor without adding saltiness per se. Meanwhile adding salt afterwards does add saltiness
5. Why is it important for health?
-Energy production-on all of our cells there is a sodium-potassium pump, that, among other things, is heavily involved in energy production
-Nervous system function-all the signals sent in via our nervous system rely on electrical conductivity to do their job and sodium is one of the most important electrolytes
-Hydration-water cannot be properly absorbed and utilized by our body without adequate electrolytes like sodium
6. What about blood pressure?
-Again talk with your doctor about your individual case, but one of the main takeaways from the research literature is that salt/sodium is NOT the issue but rather the balance between sodium and potassium.
For our full video click here: https://youtu.be/W7waW0l2KH8
Studies on Salt
2020 02 19