‘Excess salt can damage good health’.
Nigerians have been advised to watch their salt intake for the sake of their health.
According to a naturopath, Dr Idowu Ogunkoya, while salt makes food tasty, it should be used moderately. “If one eats too much salt, the extra water stored in the body raises one’s blood pressure”, he said, adding: “So, the more salt you eat, the higher your blood pressure. The higher your blood pressure, the greater the strain on your heart, arteries, kidneys and brain. This can lead to heart attack, stroke, dementia and kidney disease.”
Dr Ogunkoya said eating of excess salt does not stop with adults as children also do through seasonings that accompany noodles. “Majority of salt is added to noodles through the seasoning supplied in sachets. So reduce the sodium content by using the minimum amount of seasoning, preferably half of the sachets. Instant noodle soup is often high in salt; limit its consumption to avoid excess intake of salt,” he said.
So either way one must watch salt consumption because high sodium leads to damages in the body system, “Over time, the extra work and pressure can stiffen blood vessels, leading to high blood pressure, heart attack, and stroke. It can also lead to heart failure. There is also some evidence that too much salt can damage the heart, aorta, and kidneys without increasing blood pressure, and that it may be bad for bones, too.
“Excess sodium increases blood pressure because it holds excess fluid in the body, and that creates an added burden on the heart. Too much sodium will increase your risk of stroke, heart failure, osteoporosis, stomach cancer and kidney disease,” he noted.
According to Dr Ogunkoya, eating salt is not totally bad but its overindulgence, “Table or common salt also known as sodium chloride, is added to food to make it tastier. Salt provides your body with sodium, which is necessary for proper muscle function and regulating the amount of water in the body. The average daily sodium intake should be 1500 milligrammes, while the maximum intake is 2300 milligrammes. Consuming more sodium than the maximum daily recommended intake is harmful,” he warned.
He said Cardio vascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of death in the world and hypertension or high blood pressure is a condition that affects so many Nigerians. While this condition can be caused by other factors such as stress and eating diets rich in saturated fats, excessive intake of sodium increases the risk of developing it. “If you already suffer from high blood pressure, reducing your salt intake could also reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke. When you consume too much sodium and your blood pressure is too high, over time the extra pressure can make your vessels less elastic and more susceptible to buildup of fatty deposits called plaque. This can cause atherosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries. In atherosclerosis, vessels narrow and their walls thicken, making your heart work harder and eventually raising your risk of heart attack, heart failure and stroke,” he advised.
The naturopath said every edible provided by nature has its natural salt, so one may not need to add salt at all, but if one must use, then it should be in moderation, and salt shaker should be done with.Lots of people have diabetes and don’t know it. But the disease often causes telltale changes in the retina that can be picked up by an ophthalmologist. In this eye , diabetes has caused tiny hemorrhages in the retina and yellowish deposits of blood fats (lipids). The condition is known as diabetic retinopathy.