News from CRIS: Trending - Sodium & Salt

July 18, 2023

What is sodium?

Sodium is a chemical element represented by the symbol "Na" on the periodic table.

It is an essential mineral and an electrolyte that plays a crucial role in various physiological functions in our bodies, such as maintaining proper fluid balance, nerve function, and muscle contractions.

It is one of the essential components of table salt (sodium chloride), but it also exists in many other foods and natural sources, like fruits, vegetables, and dairy.

Consuming too much sodium can lead to health issues such as high blood pressure and an increased risk of heart disease.

Do we need sodium in our diets?

Yes, sodium plays several crucial roles in maintaining our bodily health and is essential for life. Some of the key functions of sodium include:

  • Maintaining fluid balance: Sodium helps to regulate the amount of water in the body. This is important for keeping blood pressure in a healthy range and preventing dehydration.

  • Conducting nerve impulses: Sodium is essential for transmitting nerve signals throughout the body. This is important for muscle contraction, heart rate, and other bodily functions.

  • Contracting and relaxing muscle: Sodium helps muscles to contract and relax. This is important for movement, digestion, and other bodily processes.

  • Maintaining the proper pH balance of the blood: Sodium helps to keep the blood's pH level in a healthy range. This is important for preventing medical conditions like acidosis and alkalosis.

Where do we find sodium in our diets?

Sodium is present in small amounts in fruits, vegetables, and dairy products. It's commonly associated with processed and packaged foods, which often have high sodium content.

We can find sodium in ingredients, including,

What is the difference between sodium and salt?

Sodium consists of a single element, Sodium (Na).

Common salt comprises at least two elements, Sodium and Chlorine to makeup Sodium Chloride (NaCl).

Therefore, salt contains sodium as one of its components.

What types of salts are there?

There are many salts available to us. Some salts contain not only Sodium Chloride (NaCl) but also additional elements like iron, magnesium, iodine, and various minerals, including,

  • Celtic Sea Salt

  • Himalayan Pink Salt

  • Sea Salt

  • Table Salt fortified with iodine

While most salts contain trace amounts of anti-caking agents to prevent clumping, certain salts don't include any additional ingredients. These salts include:

  • Kosher Salt

  • Pickling Salt

The market offers a wide array of salt types, each with unique characteristics and mineral compositions.


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