Though salt tastes great in recipes, or sprinkled on top of finished dishes, our bodies don’t always think it’s so great.
Too much salt is dangerous to our health and can take a toll on the body, especially the heart. Once switching over to a low-sodium diet, you should notice increased energy levels, a lower blood pressure and even some healthy weight loss. Hypertension, better known as high blood pressure, is a leading cause of strokes and heart disease in Nigerians. With this knowledge, making changes to your salt intake should be an easy choice.
Below are some of my tips on why, and how, to reduce the amount of salt we consume on a daily basis.
The best reason to monitor your salt intake is related to hypertension. According to specialists, just one teaspoon of salt, or 2,300 mg, is the recommended daily serving of salt in a healthy adult. Now, this number is nearly cut in half when we begin to consider those who already suffer from high blood pressure. The “ideal” recommended daily salt intake for those with high blood pressure and even for those who are healthy is just 1,500 mg per day.
Now, the first step to hitting these serving sizes is simple. Many Nigerians leave a salt shaker on the dinner table for use at each meal and that in itself can add up each time salt is sprinkled onto food.
Try to substitute the salt with other seasonings and herbs that work well with most dishes. Next, shop smart when you are picking up items at the grocery store.
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Go for the products labeled “low sodium” and don’t be afraid to read over the nutrition facts to learn what the appropriate serving sizes are, after all, the labels are there for that reason. Last but definitely not least, increase the amounts of fruits and vegetables in your diet to help lower your sodium consumption.
Energy & Exercise
The feeling of being tired and worn out is never a good one and your daily salt intake can have effects on your energy levels. After creating a healthy diet routine, a daily exercise regime will be the next thing to begin. Regular exercise and dieting contribute to your body’s ability to lose weight and reduce cholesterol and high blood pressure levels.
When creating an exercise routine, keep in mind that cardio is known to increase your energy levels so, it is recommended that you try to fit in your routine earlier in the day. Cardio and other types of exercise will feel easier to complete when dieting because your body will be in better condition. With an effective diet and exercise plan underway, you will be on your way to a healthier life in no time!
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