#FitnessFacts: SALT

-Salt is essential for healthy body function, as well as proper balance of fluids.

-There are 3 main categories of salt people consume: table salt, sea salt, & harvested sea salt.

-Of the 3, harvested sea salt is the healthiest, since it contains the most amounts of minerals. Table salt contains the least amount of nutrients, & can contain anti-caking agents & other fillers.

-Table salt is the most common, and is plain white. Some examples of harvested sea salt are Real Salt, Celtic Sea Salt, & Himalayan Salt. These tend to be colorful, in shades of pink, brown, or grey.

-Table salt is added to many foods as a preservative to increase it’s shelf life. Most processed foods contain excessive amounts of salt- sometimes more than the RDA (recommended daily allowance).

-The RDA for sodium (aka salt) is no more than 2,300 mg. A healthy daily intake is a minimum 500-1,500 mg.

-Unfortunately, most Americans get more salt than they need. Too much sodium in your diet can result in a sodium buildup in your bloodstream.

-If left untreated, high levels of sodium can lead to many diseases, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke and kidney disease.

-It’s also possible to have low levels of salt intake, especially for runners or people that exercise for extended periods of time. If you exercise or sweat a lot, your body uses much of it’s sodium- so be sure to intake some before, during & after your exercise. Some sports drinks like Powerade were designed for this exact reason.

-Fun fact: The water that makes up the majority of our bodies is mostly salt water, with a very similar composition to the ocean! That’s why when someone is ill, they receive a saline, or salt-water, solution, directly into their bloodstream.

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