Shaking salt over your food at the table could cut your life short by almost 1000 days, according to a recent study.

Salt is an important mineral that we need to maintain health, but you can overdo it. Adding a pinch of salt in its natural form, like rock salt/sea salt, to your meal is not an issue unless you have high blood pressure. Even then, I would argue that the issue with the over-consumption of salt stems largely from the salt in packaged foods.

You can reduce your salt intake by buying the packaged foods with lowered sodium content. Or better yet, focus on cooking with ingredients (meat veg, eggs etc); just eating real food, and using herbs, spices to flavour your food and a pinch of salt if required. Again we are demonising a natural food and blaming it for what ultra-processed foods (which are high in sugar, seeds oils and salt) are doing to our health.

The study indicated that those who added salt to their food were more likely to have a high BMI, they were less likely to have a healthy lifestyle (moderate drinking, non-current smoking, regular physical activity); and had higher prevalence of diabetes and cardiovascular diseases but a lower prevalence of high blood pressure. Higher frequency of adding salt to foods was associated with higher intake of red meat and processed meat but lower intake of vegetables, fruits, and fish. After adjusting for many of these other factors, salt was still found to be a potential risk so we do need to take note of this study.

I am not saying that this study is not valid or that everyone should eat truckloads of salt. I just think that it always comes back to the basics. Eat real food in a balanced way including meat/fish/veggies/eggs/nuts/seeds/legumes and some fruit. Use quality oils like olive oil. Move your body, don’t overdo alcohol, don’t smoke and learn how to manage your stress.

I previously wrote about salt here.

Fiona Kane is a Nutritional Medicine Practitioner, Mind Body Eating Coach, Holistic Counsellor, Professional Speaker and writer on Health and Nutrition and the founder of Informed Health.


How to Support a Healthy Immune System

Here's a gift for you, our free e-book - how to support a healthy immune system

Practical foundational nutrition and lifestyle strategies you can implement now to support your immune system.

Please note: After downloading our awesome freebie, you’ll be added to our e-newsletter list. But don’t worry. You’ll receive only high quality content and we won’t spam you. Feel free to opt out at any time.

Download free How to Support a Healthy Immune System e-book now