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Why Should Excessive Salt Intake Be Discouraged?

Posted Aug 26 2008 4:18pm

Sodium is the major component (about 40%) of salt (sodium chloride). It is essential for cell function as it maintains the electrolyte balance in the body, which regulates the flow of fluids such as water and blood.

Regular consumption of excessive salt intake will lead to hypertension in the long run. Based on the prevailing rate of salt intake, average blood pressure is expected to hike by about 6 mmHg over a 10-year period. For 30 years, it will be 18 mmHg (6 x 3). If the starting systolic pressure is 120 mmHg when you are 20 years old, then your blood pressure will be 138 mmHg by the time you are 50.

Hypertension is likely to raise the risk of coronary heart disease, too. Other possible medical complications include kidney problems, loss of calcium through urine which will cause osteoporosis and higher risk of fractures. Chances of stomach cancer will also be higher, according to research.

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