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Sunday 26 June 2011

Don’t Fear Salt.

Most straight thinking people realise pretty quickly the standard dietary advice for diabetics from most healthcare professionals is wrong very wrong. They realise the carbs have got to go big time. Next the question comes up what about the fats. Everywhere you look it’s low fat this and low fat that. Every food advert almost every packaged food shouts low fat. Low fat factory and prepared food is cheaper to make and if people believe it’s more healthy they will pay more money. It’s a real winner for the food manufacturers. Cheaper to make and premium price leads to bigger profit margins. Again the straight thinking person soon realises there are good fats and bad fats. The straight thinker soon learns the right fats are essential to good health. Next question to address is salt.

For most type two diabetics high blood pressure is part of the diabetes deal. And the standard advice from the medics is drop the salt. Salt they tell us will do our blood pressure no good at all. Excessive levels of salt does no-one any good, very much like insulin levels, but as with insulin, too low a level leads to serious problems. If you start a low carb diet and prepare all your own food and avoid added salt, you may be going too low on salt. Think about it, many of us were eating ready meals and factory made foods before low carbing and many of these foods have a very high salt content. We have quickly gone from a high salt diet to a possibly very low salt diet. Some words from Dr. Jay Wortman a lowcarb expert and type two diabetic on lowcarb and salt.

“When you cut the carbs your kidneys will release sodium. This is why people lose some water initially and why blood pressure also tends to get better on low-carb. If you are not careful to replace the lost sodium sufficiently by adding salt to your food, you will experience the effects of mild hypo-natremia. These are: headache, constipation, weakness, fatigue, low-blood pressure, othostatic hypotension and possibly leg cramps. If you get a blood test you may find that your potassium is low, too. Unfortunately, there is no reliable blood test for magnesium but it may also be low. Supplementing with salt should correct these problems. You don't need to take a potassium supplement, it will correct if you eat enough salt. Some people will have a persistent magnesium deficiency that will require supplements. This would be manifested by leg cramps and hyper-reflexia (something your doctor can check). To correct this you should take a slow-release Mg++ supplement daily.

Many people make the mistake of restricting salt and drinking lots of water when on a low carb diet. This is virtually guaranteed to cause problems. When you look carefully at the studies that report equivocal results with a low-carb diet, this is invariably one of the reasons.”



Anonymous said...

I see the village idiot is taking on Dr Jay again. He accuses him of being a salt salesman!

That place is a lost cause.


AliB said...

Yes and they should make sure that they are getting complete salt - Celtic sea salt - rather than refined and denatured cheap table salt, that has been stripped of its other elements for profit.

Salt may be 98% sodium chloride and 'only' 2% other elements, but they can make a big difference to how the body is able to use the salt. Those other elements are buffers and support to the SC and are co-factors in many bodily processes and functions. We don't need much of them, which is why they only make us 2%, but they are still very important.

After all, if 2% of the bolts were missing from the Golden Gate Bridge, they'd close it down.

Anonymous said...

We need to take more salt on board during this present spell of weather.

Anonymous said...

Isn't that a tad unwise? As most of the salt we consume is found in the food we eat, it's highly likely we're probably not missing out on that much salt. I'm with Gordon Ramsay on this one, if I season food I'm cooking for others then there's no need to add further seasoning at the dinner table.

I know what little regard you pay to guidance, however current guidelines for the upper limit of Sodium consumed by adults in the UK is 1600mg - or 4g salt (for an adult), 2400mg in the US and just under that (2300mg) in Canada (around 6g salt). Weigh that much salt out, and see how surprisingly little that is.

The far more sensible advice would be to drink more water - solves two problems 1) prevents dehydration and 2) fills us up, so we don't experience those little hunger pangs. I know when the sun hits the yard arm (and it'll be hitting the yard arm somewhere in the world pretty soon) that's what I intend to do. *hic*

AliB, I much prefer Læsø salt, so much tastier. I know it's not buying British, but what can you do, eh?

AliB said...

It doesn't matter what the brand of salt is, as long as it is the complete stuff. Celtic is easily available and relatively cheap.

Some salts marketed as 'sea salt' in the Supermarkets are not complete. They have been 'washed' and have lost some of the elements. I suppose by association even cheap refined table salt could be marketed as 'sea salt' considering most of it comes originally from the sea!

You have to be careful about drinking more water, because that will wash out a lot of the minerals and trace elements - so if you drink a lot of water it is even more vital to ensure you get enough salt.

The adrenals need salt. Many people are suffering with adrenal insufficiency - I did for years - not realising that the 'healthy' low-salt advice was actually contributing to it!

We pay far too much attention to 'received wisdom' and not nearly enough to good old common sense. We ignore the signs our body gives us in favour of that 'expert' advice.

If that advice was right, how come people are stll getting sick/fat/diabetic/cancer/MS/ME/ALS/Arthritis/Colitis/ulcers/etc./etc./etc. (delete as appropriate), and the list is still growing?

We have assumed that sickness and disease has always been with us. Well to a certain extent it has - but generally only amongst those who were in nutritional deprivation. Where people have been well-fed with highly nutritional food and nothing damaging, they have kept excellent health.

They would prize salt so highly that they would travel thousands of miles if necessary, to get it.

Lowcarb team member said...

Thanks AliB

Thanks for your comments. Those that can think outside of the box much appreciate your information and views. Keep spreading the word, only the dullards and heads in the sand won’t listen.


Anonymous said...

I remember in the heatwave of 1976 being given salt tablets and rehydration drinks in the factory were I worked, this was on the reccomendations of the works doctor for all manual workers.


Anonymous said...

@Anonymous: No, it isn't "tad unwise". I also myself experienced the sodium deficiency on low carb diet. Also, the upper limits recommendation for sodium intake are only valid for a standard mainstream high-carb diet, where kidneys store much more sodium than on the low-carb diet.

So, you usually do not miss salt on standard mainstream diet, but can on low-carb.