According to WHO, about 9.8 million people die every year due to hypertension-related complications. Hypertension is considered a silent killer producing heart disease, kidney failure and strokes. Eating salt increases the amount of salt in your blood, which ruins the balance of electrolytes and other vitamins and minerals in your body. This imbalance reduces your kidney’s ability to filter out toxins from your body. It also reduces your kidney’s ability to get rid of excess fluid from your body. This results in high blood pressure due to excess fluid in your body that exerts pressure on the blood vessels leading to the kidneys.
The WHO’s recommendation of salt intake from all sources is less than 5 grams per day. Salt or sodium is present in natural food, it is added while cooking and also used as a preservative for processed food. Considering the rapid economic growth that is happening in our country with urbanization and increased demand for processed food, it is imperative that we act at the earliest to control the salt intake of the Indian population.
Here are a few foolproof tips to start your salt detox :
Get used to low salt to allow the taste buds to recover: Not only does reducing your salt intake affect your blood pressure and other health parameters, it also helps you taste foods better.
Eat fresh food when possible: Since processed foods are packed with high levels of salt, switching to fresh and natural foods is the best way to reduce your daily salt intake.
Add less salt in cooking: With high amounts of salt added to food, your taste buds become immune to the level of salt and you will eventually need more salt in your food to bring out the taste you are looking for. Gradually reducing this amount will help you give up the high salt habit one step at a time. And since your taste buds will eventually become more sensitive to salt content in food, dishes made with low salt will start to taste as delicious as one with high salt content.
Do not add extra salt while at the table: A common practice in India is to provide a little bit of salt on the side of one’s plate while eating and to provide a salt shaker for one to spice up their soups. By stopping this practice, you can reduce your salt intake.
Use herbs and spices as flavouring agents: Ditch the salt and use herbs and other natural flavouring agents to your dishes that will help enhance the flavour while reducing your salt intake.>