Salt, also known as sodium chloride, is a prevalent component used for both enhancing flavor and extending the shelf life of food. Nearly all natural foods have minimal salt content, including vegetables, fruits, meats, whole grains, and dairy products. Sodium, the main constituent of salt, plays crucial roles in muscle relaxation and contraction, facilitates nerve impulse transmission, regulates blood pressure, and maintains overall fluid balance.

Are You Consuming An Excessive Amount Of Salt Watch Your Intake

How Much Salt Is Recommended

Our bodies only require an insignificant quantity of salt, more specifically sodium. Every day, an amount of 1,500 milligrams would suffice. However, if this amount goes below, it might lead to an imbalance of electrolytes in your blood, resulting in dizziness, feeling of nausea, headache, muscle toughness, and fatigue, as well as a lack of energy. 

Nonetheless, this situation is far from reality. This is because people find it difficult to limit their salt intake because of the variety of food they eat, from processed foods to meals that are eaten in restaurants. These contain an extreme amount of salt, especially to prolong shelf-life. 

Sometimes people consume around 3,500 milligrams per day. If you eat salt more than the suggested limit consistently, it could seriously affect your health in the long run, making the disadvantages of consuming salt outweigh its benefits. 

Effects of Eating Too Much Salt

The amount of salt consumed could vary from person to person and their sensitivity could vary too. Some might be highly sensitive to salt/sodium, with them showing an intense amount of symptoms pointing to a sodium-heavy diet, whereas some might have low sensitivity, however, the condition could develop with time, and the progression could get worse long-term. Some of the major short-term effects of consuming salty meals are;


If you feel that your eyes, stomach, hands, or feet are tight or swollen, that is a result of consuming salty meals; especially pizza, sandwiches, and soup for a prolonged period of time. The sodium content within salt retains water, causing an excess amount of water to build up within your body; further disrupting the fluid balance within your body. You might feel puffier and even gain weight within a short period.

Increase in Blood Pressure

Too much sodium could retain water. As a result, the kidneys find it difficult to filter the right amount of water needed by the body and the rest for excretion. There will be an imbalance between the two ratios, resulting in more water being retained inside the body’s bloodstream. This increased amount of blood presses against the walls of blood vessels, resulting in high blood pressure (hypertension).

Increased Thirst

With the increased amount of water retained within your body, the cells take the chance to pull the water to carry out their processes efficiently. Therefore, you might feel very thirsty and dehydrated after a heavy salty meal. In this case, drink water to neutralize the salt consumed and rejuvenate your cells!

Frequently Using the Restroom

When you are forced to drink water to quench your thirst, you might have to go to the restroom more frequently than usual. 

Poor Sleep

Consuming too much salt can disrupt your sleep cycle, especially if your meal was taken later into the night. This would result in increased blood pressure, along with the need to drink water and go to the bathroom, making it difficult to sleep. 

Consequently, with all of the demands and effects of eating excessive amounts of salt, your stomach might have a challenging time. You are highly vulnerable to getting nauseated or diarrhea. You might also experience cramps which could vary in intensity, with the amount of salt that you have eaten. Therefore, the best option is to drink enough water, which will help you feel fresh by rehydrating your cells. 

Now that you are aware of the short-term effects of increased intake of salt, it could also lead to enduring consequences as well. Most of these start with short-term effects, progressing to increase your risk of heart disease, headaches, heart failure, renal disease, kidney stones, osteoporosis, stomach cancer, and stroke. 

How to Reduce Your Salt Consumption?


The most natural way to reduce the effects of consuming too much salt is to sweat. The body’s sweat, tears, and urine naturally remove the sodium within salt; which is the major component of causing issues related to high salt intake. Out of the three mentioned methods of excretion, the most effective is through sweat. 

To even the levels out and retain the fluid balance within your body, you could get sweaty by exercising, running, or sitting in a sauna. Then you could start the following day by drinking lots of water and by eating a low-sodium meal.

Know your salt intake

Starting to know how much salt you are consuming and having a plan on how you should start limiting your consumption could go a long way. This has to work at any given time. For example, if you can’t change the amount of salt in processed food, try reducing the portion size of that item. 

The recommended amount of salt is 1500 milligrams per day, so make sure you evenly spread out this amount throughout your meals, so that you do not disrupt your kidneys, heart, and stomach in the long term.

Try eating unprocessed, fresh food

The best way to control your way through salt is to eat fresh, whole, unprocessed foods. This could include fruits, vegetables, or even home-cooked meals. 

However, there are instances where people buy canned vegetables, if so, do check the nutrition content of each and find a brand that is low in sodium.

Beware of salty foods such as frozen meals, snack foods, like chips, soy sauce, salad dressings, and other condiments, including hot sauce. The point is not to cut them out of your diet completely but try reducing them. Otherwise, you will become addicted to foods that are excessively saturated in sugar, risking your health all over again. 

Read food labels to know what you are eating

It’s not realistic for you to prepare every single meal, so it’s time to make smart choices. Always read the nutritional content of the branch and take note of its sodium content, it should be low rather than none. The best option is to go for foods that have a salt content of at most 140 milligrams per serving. 

There might be brands that claim they have “reduced sodium” in their items, but there is not much of a difference between theirs and the other brands. It is just marketing. So always look into the sodium content of each food item. 

Look for alternative methods to enhance flavor

Salt is not the only option. You could try squeezing a lemon or lime juice, or fresh or dried spices, vinegar, and herbs. 

In conclusion, excessive salt consumption can have detrimental effects on your health. Being mindful of your daily salt intake and making conscious efforts and opting for low-sodium alternatives could significantly contribute to your overall well-being and health.