Salt is a tricky substance to understand. Your body desperately needs it to function, but too much of it is equally capable of sending you to an early grave. Only trace amounts are needed for total-body health, yet few of us can imagine enjoying a meal without the salt shaker nearby.

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Why is this seasoning agent under so much scrutiny? And why are so many people finding delight from cooking salt-free?

Let’s unpack some of the mystery of salt by looking at the ways it benefits the body while also getting an understanding of why you’re eating too much of it. Then, we’ll look at some easy ways to cut excess salt from your diet and gain complete control over the foods that you eat.

Health Effects of Salt

Table salt is technically sodium chloride, which is a crystalline compound containing 40 percent sodium. Eating table salt puts sodium in your body, an essential mineral for life. In the right quantities, salt helps your body to maintain a proper balance of fluids, properly transmit neural impulses from the brain to your body, and allows muscles to properly contract and relax.

However, big problems start to occur when you have too much sodium in your body.

Your body regulates its sodium levels by causing the kidneys to flush out excess amounts in urine. When you consume more than your kidneys can handle, the excess isn’t flushed out and starts to build up. This can lead to the severe health problems listed below.

Osteoporosis: high levels of salt in your diet tends to leach calcium from your bones, causing them to thin and weaken and making you more likely to develop osteoporosis.

High Blood Pressure: excess salt in your body retains water, increasing the volume of your blood and raising your blood pressure, which can lead to heart attacks and even death.

Heart Disease and Stroke: when your blood pressure is raised due to excess salt, the extra pressure on your blood vessels reduces their elasticity and makes them more susceptible to plaque, or buildups of fatty deposits. This may lead to atherosclerosis, or a hardening of the arteries. As your heart works harder to pump blood, you increase your risk of a heart attack or stroke.

Ways to Monitor Sodium Levels in Your Diet

You likely don’t need an expert to tell you that eating too much salt is setting your body up for disaster. Yet, knowing how much salt is fine to consume and how much is too much can be tricky.

According to The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, healthy adults shouldn’t consume more than 2,4000 milligrams of sodium, or about one teaspoon, each day. Those at risk of developing high blood pressure should cut back their level to 1,500 milligrams. Seeing as the average American consumes more than 3,400 milligrams of salt per day, odds are good you’ve got room for improvement!

The best ways to restrict your salt intake is to take more control over what you eat. Use less salt in recipes and try to avoid eating processed foods. Rinse canned foods before serving them and opt for fresh produce whenever possible.

The Importance of Cooking For Yourself

Without a doubt, the best thing you can do to reduce your salt intake is to do some salt-free cooking. High levels of sodium can sneak into the most innocent of foods (look at the label on a jar of salsa sometime!), and you will quickly go over your daily allotment if you depend on food from packages.

Finding ways to do some salt free cooking is easier than you’d expect. A fantastic option is to use our salt-free seasoning blends in lie of salt for your favorite recipes. You’ll get incredible taste from a combination of organic, non-GMO, salt-free and gluten-free ingredients that will add the zest of flavor you’ve been missing out on by relying on boring old salt.

Remember, salt is simply one of many flavoring agents. There a plenty of other ways to get amazing flavor from your food by using our salt free seasoning blends filled with garlic, dill and lemon pepper .

Our mission at Engage Organics is to make your food healthier and tastier without salt. Our small family business is dedicated to helping you reduce sodium and improve flavor with our pre-blended, all natural, plant-based blends that add zip to anything you cook without salt.

Once you start to rely on salt-free seasonings instead of table salt, you will find that your body feels healthier and that your taste buds will be exposed to a host of new flavors more exciting than boring old salt. So experiment away; your best culinary creations await!