One popular topic that you might hear people speaking about is if sodium is bad for weight loss, as many believe that it is a factor when it comes to weight/fat gain.
What Is Sodium ?
Sodium is an essential mineral that is needed to maintain a healthy cellular function and fluid balance in your body. It contains zero calories and doesn’t directly affect your weight, but the biggest problem is that many packaged and fast foods contain way too much sodium which may contribute to weight gain.
High Sodium And Weight Gain
Salty foods are known to increase your thirst and the smart thing to do would be to drink more water, but many people drink beverages that are packed with calories instead which increases their total caloric intake. Those extra calories often lead people into a caloric surplus where weight gain is inevitable. In fact one study showed that if the amount of sodium in an average diet was cut in half, the consumption of sugary drinks would decrease by 40% in a week.
The reason why salt is used in the first place is because it enhances the taste of your food and therefore it may encourage overeating due too how good the food tastes, overeating on a consistent basis will also lead to weight gain.
A common cause of weight gain from consuming to much sodium is water retention (water weight). Water retention is where your body retains more fluid in your bloodstream and cells, this leads to an increase in blood pressure so it isn’t healthy for your heart. So consuming too much sodium in the short term will lead to temporary bloating, but in the long term it causes your blood pressure to increase which puts you at a greater risk of many serious health problems like heart disease.
So the bottom line is that having a high sodium diet is not beneficial for long term health or weight loss and according to a recent study an average American consumes about 3400 mg of sodium a day. So if you want to make weight loss easier for yourself then try and limit your sodium intake to around 1500-2300 milligrams a day.
How To Reduce Sodium In Your Diet
The simplest way to reduce sodium in your diet is to start cooking at home instead of eating packaged and fast foods. If you do buy something that is packaged check all the food labels and make sure that the sodium isn’t too high, when buying your groceries try and get the items that have low sodium labelled on them or else just stick to wholefoods. Additionally, sodium can come in many forms so be aware of the following: baking soda, baking powder, monosodium glutamate, MSG, disodium phosphate and sodium chloride which is table salt.
So generally speaking, while sodium won’t affect your weight loss on the larger scale it is better to keep it consistently at around 1500-2300 milligrams a day. Obviously having your sodium go over the limit once in a while is fine, but for good health avoid large quantities of sodium too often.
If you have anymore questions about the effects of sodium on weight loss then leave a comment down below.