Salt Addiction

By: Ron Lagerquist

It is in everything. Chicken soup, pickles, pork and beans, peanut butter, bread, macaroni and cheese, ketchup, mustard and relish, canned vegetables, pizza, hot dogs, salad dressings, not to mention the endless list of junk foods, jam packed and stuffed to capacity with salt.

Organic salt or sodium is an essential mineral and is naturally present in fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds. We need only a small amount of sodium, easily supplied by these natural sources. The sodium in fruits and vegetables is complexed with other organic molecules, causing them to be absorbed slowly. In contrast, table salt is unbuffered and enters quickly through the stomach lining.

When a surplus of salt enters the bloodstream, the body is forced to store the salt between the cells until the kidneys can filter it. Salt then causes a caustic, burning effect on the surrounding tissue. For protection, the cells release water into the intercellular fluid to dilute the excess salt. As the cells give up their water, they lose elasticity and shrink. This, in turn, causes an imbalance of the cell's chemistry through a loss of potassium.

Low potassium levels cause more sodium to penetrate the cell walls. When the sodium level of the cell rises, water then enters to dilute it, causing the cell to become swollen. The continuous disruption of the cell's fluid balance can, in time, calcify, scar and destroy the muscles, valves and arteries of the entire coronary route. It may culminate in congestive heart failure. In this way, salt becomes an accomplice to North America's most voracious killer, cardiovascular disease!

In China, a traditional method of suicide was drinking water saturated with table salt. One ounce of salt causes the body to hold six pounds of excess fluid. Salt in large quantities can be lethal.

When you eat salty foods the body has to compensate to maintain homeostasis. If you eat salty foods for a long period of time, as with caffeine, heroin and nicotine, the body becomes dependent on salt to maintain balance. Therefore reducing salt intake can create physical withdrawal.

Related Article: Sugar Addiction

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Thanks very informational. My mom 84 was just told to cut back on salt to 2000mg a day. But I was reading that Sea Salt is better than table salt is that true. I am trying to slowly cut back on the salt. Something may not be avoided when it comes to her favorite food. Bacon down to 4 Slices now.
My dr told me I had to cut down on salt last month. So I started looking up things about salt. Found this acticle. Was very helpful. Thank you for this article. I'm cutting down on salt a little at a time.
Wow the breakdown of the 'path' of salt and ect was easy to comprehend! Thank you for that! I am a chronic salt eater.... as in I eat hand fulls a day as well as putting it on food. I have my whole life and recently gotten worse. I am trying to stop and need the clear backup info on what it does that is so bad in excess.
Shana LeCroy
very informative and easy to understand. thank you so much!
I was advised to go on a low salt diet and withdrawals have been kicking in for the last couple days.
Thankyou :) Very good article!
Soleil Grey
Thankyou :) Very good article!
Soleil Grey
well written, thank you.
What is organic salt? Salt grown without pesticides?
i'm so glad i found this website a year ago. i have since changed my lifestyle and i am much thinner and healthier than ive been in a long time. thank u ron
rebecca braxton
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