Why Does Sodium Matter?
A lot of people have been writing me asking me about sodium- so I thought I would share some ideas here!
First of all – our body only needs 200 mg a day for proper function. However, the American Heart Association recommendation for sodium intake is 1500 mg (or less) a day. Salt is an essential part of our diet, but we only need a little of it.
When you overeat salt, you retain water, and that increases pressure/volume into your arteries/veins. Excess pressure over time wears down the walls of the arteries and veins and creates unneccessary stress and strain (which can lead to additional complications and serious health problems). In addition, the heart, who loves to self-regulate the body, notes that there is an excess of pressure in the arteries and veins, so it lowers the heart rate in order to try to decrease that volume. This stress on the heart can cause various cardiovascular concerns and conditions over time.
Eating a meal higher in salt the night before a race to retain extra water is a fun tradition, but in general – keep your sodium intake to 1500 mg or less a day.
Not sure what you currently consuming? Trying using a food journal for a few days to understand how much salt your diet includes on a regular basis.
www.thedailyplate.com is a great free journal.
https://www.choosemyplate.gov/SuperTracker/ is another great site that offers a free journal. Check them out!
For more information, watch the video I created regarding ‘What’s the deal with Sodium?’