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Benefits of Sodium And Its Side Effects

Sodium Nutritional Value of Sodium Health Benefits of Sodium Uses of Sodium Side-Effects & Allergies of Sodium Origin And Cultivation of Sodium
Benefits of Sodium And Its Side Effects

Sodium is one of the most important electrolytes needed for the regulation of blood. The absence of this important electrolyte can result in the impairment of different bodily functions. It is one of the most versatile elements occurring in more than eighty varieties. It regulates the body fluids and also transmits electric impulses within the human body. Dissimilar to the other minerals and vitamins, sodium is not affected by heat and can therefore be used in several preparations without the least damage to its effects. It is also one of the most significant constituents of nerves while it also helps in regulating muscle contractions. Briefly speaking, it is one of the most essentials elements required in human diet basically for cellular activity regulation and the proper functioning of the nervous system. it is necessary to have supplemental doses of sodium if you tend to suffer from adrenal insufficiency, have sunstroke or sweat profusely.

Sodium

Sodium is one of the most important electrolytes and one of the most essential ions present in ECF or extracellular fluid. It has a pivotal role to play in muscle contraction and enzyme operations. It is necessary for fluid maintenance and osmoregulation within the body. Improved performance of the heart, improved glucose absorption and improved nervous system are the other important benefits of sodium. It can be described as a mineral that is present in small quantities in natural foods but in large quantities in processed foods for enhancing their flavor. It is basically a predominant ion that functions with bicarbonate and chloride for maintaining a balance of negative and positive ions in the tissues and fluids of the body. Table salt is the primary source of sodium.

Nutritional Value of Sodium

Table salt contains 40% sodium and therefore it is one of the most common dietary sources of sodium. One tablespoon of table salt consists of 2300 milligrams of sodium, the suggested maximum intake of sodium per day for a healthy adult. However, it is important for people with high blood pressure to limit their intake of sodium to 1500 milligrams every day. Healthy kids require 1000 to 1500 milligrams of sodium. Apart from table salt or common salt, the other important sources of sodium include canned soups, vegetables and processed meat like ham, sausage and bacon. The added varieties of sodium are monosodium glutamate, sodium nitrate, sodium saccharin, sodium benzoate and sodium bicarbonate. These are generally found in onion salt, soy sauce and garlic salt.

Health Benefits of Sodium

Health Benefits of Sodium
Mentioned below are the best health benefits of Sodium

Regulates fluid

Including sodium in one’s diet helps in regulating fluids outside the body cells. Sodium is needed for pumping fluids into the body cells. Sodium helps in facilitating fluid movement by way of the permeable membranes to areas that are high in their salt content. Thus, it can rightly be said that sodium in combination with chlorine helps in the prevention of loss of water from the human body.

Balances ions

Sodium along with bicarbonate helps in maintaining the right balance between negatively charged ions and positively charged ions. Therefore, sodium has an important role to play in maintaining the charge differential throughout the cell membranes. Thus, it enables the cells of the nerve to send messages while allowing the muscle cells to properly contract.

Prevents loss of water

Sunstroke is a problem that is caused due to the loss of water and salt from the human body. Because of this the human body is not able to maintain normal temperature due to constant exposure to high temperatures. Sunstroke can be prevented by having fluids that contain sugar and salt as they works by replacing the loss of important electrolytes

Prevents cramps

Muscle cramps are a result of dehydration and electrolyte imbalance. These are common during the summer season when temperatures seem to reach extreme heights. Sodium makes way for hydration and muscle contraction. Fluids and juices that are rich in their sodium content help in restoring electrolyte balance within the human body.

Removes excess CO2

Sodium is also of good help in removing excessive carbon dioxide that gets accumulated within the human body by way of excretion. This is probably one of the biggest advantages for the human body that comes from having sodium-rich fluids and drinks

Develops the brain

Sodium is one of the most important elements required for the proper development of the human brain and for the improvement of the functioning of the brain. Change in levels of sodium within the body have a direct effect on the brain resulting in confusion, dizziness and lethargy.

Sufficient sodium

Despite the fact that sodium is generally associated with high blood pressure yet it is worth noting that sodium in proper amount works great in maintaining the health of the human heart. Having sufficient sodium is necessary for keeping the heart health intact. Sodium possesses the ability of regulating nerve impulses that have a good influence on the heart. Sodium can also help in keeping nerve contractions normal further resulting in proper blood pressure.

Improves teeth

It is important to brush the teeth several times during the day for maintaining its proper condition. Teeth is likely to accumulate plaque and develop odour if it is not brushed in the proper manner. Sodium works great at cleansing the teeth and the mouth. The salt content of sodium helps in cleaning the mouth and the teeth. Sea salt or common salt can effectively be used as normal toothpaste for cleaning the teeth.

Improves the skin

Free radicals make the skin appear dull. There are many women who make use of anti-aging creams for fighting the signs of aging. Sodium is one of the most important ingredients found in anti-aging creams. This is because sodium helps in moisturizing the skin and in preventing the early signs of aging.

Prevents dryness

Sodium is widely used in soaps and shampoos as well. This is due to the fact that sodium possesses the ability of inhibiting the growth of pathogens because of its antibacterial and antimicrobial properties. It is also used in different baby care products as it reduces the function of the oily barrier of the skin resulting in dryness.

Neutralize toxins

Insect bites can result in itchiness and such conditions can easily be eliminated by making use of sodium. Sodium works by neutralizing skin toxins that helps in relieving itchiness.

Relieve heartburn

Sodium is also of good help in neutralizing stomach acid. It is also used in several over-the-counter products for helping relieve heartburn and indigestion

Uses of Sodium

Apart from being highly beneficial for the human body, sodium is also useful for other purposes. The most common use of sodium is in table salt form which is also called sodium chloride. Table salt is one of the most important seasoning ingredients in different dishes. Table salt also helps in faster healing. Cured meats and various other foods are effectively preserved using good amounts of table salt rich in its content of sodium. Baking soda which is also rich in its content of sodium is another useful ingredient found in kitchens. It is used as a leavening ingredient for pastries and cakes. There are other useful purposes served by sodium. When mixed with vinegar, it works in the form of an effective and fast-acting cleaning solution for almost anything.

Side-Effects & Allergies of Sodium

Excessive intake of sodium can result in high blood pressure and increased blood volume. Therefore, experts are of the view that people should always aim towards having a diet that is not very rich in its content of sodium. Consuming sodium in high amounts of sodium might cause dangerous fluid build-up in individuals with congestive heart failure, kidney disease and liver cirrhosis. It is always important for such individuals to have sodium in consultation with their doctor. Excessive sodium intake can result in memory loss as well. Despite the fact that sodium is an important nutrient in a balanced diet, it can result in hypertension and stomach cancer.

Origin And Cultivation of Sodium

Excessive intake of sodium can result in high blood pressure and increased blood volume. Therefore, experts are of the view that people should always aim towards having a diet that is not very rich in its content of sodium. Consuming sodium in high amounts of sodium might cause dangerous fluid build-up in individuals with congestive heart failure, kidney disease and liver cirrhosis. It is always important for such individuals to have sodium in consultation with their doctor. Excessive sodium intake can result in memory loss as well. Despite the fact that sodium is an important nutrient in a balanced diet, it can result in hypertension and stomach cancer.

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Content Details
Written By
PhD (Pharmacology) Pursuing, M.Pharma (Pharmacology), B.Pharma - Certificate in Nutrition and Child Care
Pharmacology
Reviewed By
B.Sc (Home Science), Post Graduation Diploma in Dietetics and Public Health Nutrition
Dietitian/Nutritionist
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