Eating a high-sodium diet can lead to impairing cognitive function and increase the risk of many degenerative diseases like dementia
Apart from these, studies have revealed that excessive salt can also cause an increase in blood pressure, heart disease, and stroke, and thus can be life-threatening. Also, when consumed in large amounts daily, salt leads to the activation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, the body’s stress response system, thereby increasing stress.
What is dementia?
Symptoms of dementia include:
- Memory loss
- Difficulty in communicating or finding words
- Difficulty with visual abilities
- Difficulty in reasoning
- Difficulty handling complex tasks
- Difficulty with planning and organizing
- Difficulty with coordination and motor functions
Confusion and disorientation
How does high salt intake cause dementia?
Insufficient levels of nitric oxide, therefore, restrict blood flow by at least 25 per cent, thus, causing dementia.
Tau detaches from the cytoskeleton thereby building up in the brain, and leading to cognitive difficulties.
Healthy salt alternatives
According to Healthline, there are many flavourful alternatives to salt that do not cause any side effects, a few of these are:
- Garlic: It is one of the healthiest herbs that boost flavour without increasing
sodiumcontent in the body. Since it is full of antioxidants, garlic keeps oxidative stress at bay, while keeping heart health regulated.
- Black pepper: While salt and pepper are one of the best combinations, cutting back on salt doesn’t mean to need to leave the other partner too. Black pepper is the best addition to foods like soup, eggs, pasta, roasts, and many other savoury dishes. Black pepper is also instrumental in decreasing inflammation that leads to brain and heart issues.
- Balsamic vinegar: It has a sharp and tart flavour and can be used in mostly all dishes to replace salt.
- Ginger: This earthy herb not only is anti-inflammatory but bursts with flavours in both sweet and savoury dishes. Ginger can easily replace salt in many dishes like sauces, marinades, soups, etc.
Disclaimer: Tips and suggestions mentioned in the article are for general information purposes only and should not be construed as professional medical advice. Always consult your doctor or a dietician before starting any fitness programme or making any changes to your diet.
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