Too much intake of salt affects our body.
But our body requires salt to function well.
Moderate intake helps our body balance fluid in the blood, it helps to maintain healthy blood pressure, and it is also important in nerve and muscles function well.
But as said, “too much of everything is bad”, excess intake of salt is not beneficial to our body. It will lead to the storage of excess water in our system, thereby increasing blood pressure.
Below are some health issues associated with too much salt intake.
1- Heart disease
Excess intake of salt is associated with heart problems, and it causes hypertension. It damages blood vessels wall, thereby exposing us to congestive heart failure. It causes complications in people already suffering from heart disease.
2- Kidney problems
Kidneys are vital organs, and they regulate the amount of fluid and salt in our body. Too much salt intake can affect kidney function in the sense that it will increase protein amount in urine, which will lead to kidney dysfunction. And there is also a piece of evidence that too much salt intake can worsen kidney disease in people with existing kidney problems.
3- Stomach cancer
Research has shown that excess salt damages the stomach wall and causes lesions that, if left untreated, can cause stomach cancer. The presence of salt in the stomach also causes bacterial infection.
When sodium is in excess in the body, the kidney’s function reduces. Our body becomes dehydrated, which leads to the extraction of water from the cells. Taking it in a moderate amount helps the body to retain water, but when taking in a high amount, it causes the body to excrete excess water through urine. You will experience intense thirst, nausea, vomiting, stomachache, and dizziness when this happens. When this happens, drink a lot of water to neutralize the effect.
5- Increase in water retention
This happens when salt is consumed in excess. It has symptoms including edema (swelling in some aspects of the body, especially hands and legs) and increased weight. This is because our body needs a balance in sodium and water content to function properly.
6- Causes dementia(a memory loss disorder)
New research on the effect of excess salt intake suggests that consuming too much salt impaired cognitive function, which leads to dementia and low intake is associated with an increase in cognitive function.
7- Damage arteries
Consuming excess salt causes hypertension which can make the arteries leading to the brain become stiff. And as time goes, the damage can become severe, causing the arteries to burst, which might lead to death.
How to get rid of too much salt from our body
Taking an adequate amount of water can neutralize the effect, thereby flushing out the salt. Also, eating food rich in potassium and avoiding salty food can help.
In conclusion, too much salt intake results in the storage of excess water by the body, which leads to an increase in blood pressure, kidney disease, damage to arteries, stroke, and sometimes death.