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28/06/23 3

Is salt bad for you? How to behave in summer

Salt (NaCl) consists of two parts: sodium (40%) and chloride (60%). In the past, salt was mainly used for antimicrobial purposes and to preserve food, allowing safe and prolonged consumption. Over the centuries, this use of salt has made it a fundamental element of our cuisine to the point of being associated with the savouriness of food: a dish is in fact ‘tasteless’ without salt.

What are the guidelines for salt consumption

An adult should assume no more than 5 grams of salt a day from all sources, whereas a child or adolescent (age < 14 years old) less than half, that is no more than 2.3 grams. In contemporary society, average salt consumption has unfortunately exceeded these limits by a factor of two, mainly due to the high salt content of packaged foods. What can be the consequences?

Why take the right amount of salt

Excessive salt consumption can cause water retention and bloating at best, but above all cardiovascular problems starting with high blood pressure. Sodium in fact affects blood pressure and in excessive amounts is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease, as well as osteoporosis (it increases the release of calcium in the urine) and is associated with a higher incidence of stomach cancer.

Conversely, a strongly hyposodic, i.e. salt-free, diet can cause shortages, low blood pressure, muscle cramps and fatigue: sodium is in fact a very important element for the passage of nutrients into cells and nerve impulses.

While it is right to consult a doctor or nutritionist to consider reducing salt in the diet, one should not run the opposite course of action and eliminate it completely. This is particularly important in the summer and if you practise sport: sweating causes a loss of our mineral salt reserves, especially if it is abundant.

Usefulness of saline supplements during the summer season

During the summer season, it is especially important to maintain the body’s electrolyte balance and hydration. The saline supplements based on sodium, magnesium, potassium and carbohydrates can play an essential role in providing additional support. These supplements help restore the levels of sodium and other electrolytes lost through sweating, allowing the body to function optimally during intense physical activity or hot days. It is important to consult a health professional or dietician to determine the correct amount of salt supplements to take, based on individual needs.

Bromelain supplements against water retention

During the summer, many people struggle with water retention, which can cause bloating and discomfort. Supplements containing bromelain and other extracts with diuretic properties can be helpful in counteracting this problem. Bromelain is a natural enzyme extracted from pineapple that has anti-inflammatory and diuretic properties. It can help reduce fluid accumulation in the body and improve lymphatic drainage.The intake of bromelain supplements, combined with a balanced diet and regular exercise, can help reduce water retention and promote a feeling of lightness.

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