The usage of salt in delicious meals is a necessity. Food without salt will be tasteless. However, using table salt excessively or frequently might have a negative impact on the body's health.1
Based on age, the following are suggestions for the maximum salt intake :2
> Less than 1 year: 1 gram per day;
> 1 to 3 years: 2 grams per day;
> 4 to 6 years: 3 grams (half a teaspoon);
> 7 to 10 years : 5 grams per day
> 11 years and older: six grams (1 teaspoon) per day, or roughly 2300 mg.
Two elements, sodium (sodium) and chloride, make up table salt. The body benefits greatly from these two elements. Sodium helps muscles and nerves function, regulates blood pressure and volume, and keeps the body's fluid equilibrium. Although chloride can aid with food digestion.1
Too much salt can cause diseases such as stroke, heart disease, high blood pressure, kidney disease, kidney stones, osteoporosis and stomach cancer. Signs that the body consumes too much salt, such as:3
Bloating is one of the most common short-term effects, due to fluid buildup in the body.
1. High blood pressure as a result of your body having trouble getting rid of fluids.
2. Swelling of body parts such as face, hands, feet and ankles
3. Thirst and frequent urination. Excessive salt consumption causes the body to pull water from the cells so you will feel very thirsty.
4. Weight gain because your body retains water.
5. Not sleeping well, feeling restless and often waking up at night
Too little salt can also be harmful to the body. Some evidence suggests that a low-salt diet can cause these following symptoms, such as:4
1. Low blood pressure or hypotension. Low blood pressure can be dangerous. Some of the signs and symptoms include dizziness, nausea, fainting, blurred vision.
2. Dehydration, because sodium plays an important role in regulating water balance, signs of dehydration can appear in the form of skin changes, dry mouth, and thirst.
3. Low blood sodium and low salt diet can cause hyponatremia, people with hyponatremia can experience serious neurological problems such as altered mental status, seizures, hydrocephalus, coma, and death.
We must be more cautious while using table salt because it is used in the majority of foods that we eat. Make sure your salt intake stays within the advised safe limits.
1. Airindya Bella. Kenali Bahaya Garam Dapur bila Digunakan secara Berlebihan.Last reviewed : February 8, 2022. Avaliable at : https://www.alodokter.com/terlalu-banyak-memakai-garam-dapur-ini-akibatnya.
2. Meva Nareza. Ini Anjuran Konsumsi Gula, Garam, dan Lemak per Hari. Last reviewed : October 6, 2020. Avaliable at: https://www.alodokter.com/ini-anjuran-konsumsi-gula-garam-dan-lemak-per-hari.
3. Christine Mikstas, RD. Signs You’re Eating Too Much Salt. Last reviewed : February 24, 2023. Avaliable at : https://www.webmd.com/diet/ss/slideshow-too-much-salt
4. Salt: Is It Healthy or Unhealthy?. Last reviewed : October 27, 2021. Avaliable at : https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/salt-good-or-bad