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Is sodium evil?

Okay, I love dill pickles. I love the conveience of canned vegetables with salt in them. I love canned mushrooms. I love soy sauce.

There are so many "low-sodium" products out there and I know that it's good to keep your sodium intake low if you have high blood pressure. But what if you don't?

I don't add any salt to any of my meals after they are cooked, and I add very little during cooking. I don't drink soda, haven't for years - only water. However I am on a weightloss plan. Is sodium really that bad for me? How much is too much?


Thu. Mar 2, 5:01pm

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Sodium causes water retention. It doesn't cause "weight gain" in a technical sense, but the more you eat, the more bloated and "bigger" you will be. If you cut the sodium, you can flush your body better and you'll be smaller and you'll weigh less.

As for a weight loss regimen, I personally don't bother cutting sodium, but if there's a particular event that I want to look good for, I'll cut sodium for a few days ahead of time. Cutting sodium won't cause permanent weight loss, it'll just rid you of excess water weight. So, for me (and probably for you), it may not be practical to cut sodium, b/c that's where so much flavor comes from in diet-friendly foods.

However, I always use "reduced sodium" versions when available - I think they taste the same.

Thursday, March 02, 2006, 5:11 PM

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I've seen some "reduced sodium" foods that just have potassium chloride instead, which is probably why they still taste like salt.

Thursday, March 02, 2006, 5:15 PM

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Awesome! Thanks for the clarification, that's exactly what I was looking for!

Thursday, March 02, 2006, 6:15 PM

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Be careful, you do need some sodium in your body.

Thursday, March 02, 2006, 6:37 PM

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Most things are "evil" in excess.... moderation is the key

Thursday, March 02, 2006, 6:38 PM

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I am a salt"oholic" I like to salt everything. When I used to not care what I ate I always picked salty snacks over sweet. I did switch to a low sodium salt, but I can't do salt substitute it tastes too metallic to me. Maybe I have extra watr gain...but oh well. I am young, my blood pressure is fine, so that will be that. :p

-alias1013

Thursday, March 02, 2006, 6:49 PM

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Sodium causes you to excrete more calcium from your urine (and thus your bones). Women should try to avoid excess sodium for the reasons of osteoporosis and propensity to retain excess water.

Thursday, March 02, 2006, 6:55 PM

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It's true, you do need sodium in your body. I was suffering from being light headed whenever I stood up or walked stairs and my Dr. told me to add some more salt to my diet and I am now fine.

Thursday, March 02, 2006, 6:55 PM

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Most Americans consumer far too much sodium in their diets. I believe FDA will be coming out with new guidelines for lower maximum amounts. Yes, there may be a few who don't get enough, like one of our posters, or people in other situations, but there are huge amounts off added salt in everything that is prepared, and that's why people are getting too much without ever even hitting the salt shaker.

Friday, March 03, 2006, 4:25 AM

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i sometimes think i'm a 'saltaholic'. i love eveything salty, from pretzels to pickles. my blood pressure is perfectly normal. i have never read about sodium causing increased loss of calcium. if this is true, i'll probably have to start doing something about my salt intake because i have already been diagnosed with osteopenia - the precursor to osteoporosis.

Friday, March 03, 2006, 8:01 AM

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Here is slightly more about the sodium/calcium issue. White women are at higher risk of caclium excretion (bone loss) than black women. There are many publications with this information as well, but many of you won't have access to them (I am a university student, so I have access to them all).

Link

Friday, March 03, 2006, 9:56 AM

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If my sodium intake is high for the day than I also try and make sure my water intake is also that will help to flush the body

Friday, March 03, 2006, 8:03 PM

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