Reducing your salt intake can reduce the risk of heart attacks, strokes, and high blood pressure which are all common side effects of excessive salt consumption. As you age, reducing your salt intake can help your body keep up with the aging process and ward off many of the common ailments associated with old age like arthritis, Alzheimer’s disease, and dementia. Here are five reasons to consider reducing your salt intake as you age.
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1) Excessive Sodium Intake Leads to High Blood Pressure
One of the main reasons you should reduce your salt intake as you age is because excessive sodium intake leads to high blood pressure. High blood pressure is a major risk factor for heart disease, stroke, and kidney disease—three leading causes of death in the United States. A diet high in salt can also cause fluid retention, which can lead to or worsen congestive heart failure. So if you want to keep your heart healthy and reduce your risk of these diseases, it’s important to watch your salt intake.
2) Excessive Sodium in Older Adults Increases Their Risk of Developing Heart Disease
As we age, our bodies become less efficient at processing and excreting sodium. This increased sodium retention can lead to high blood pressure, which is a major risk factor for heart disease. A high salt diet can also contribute to hardening of the arteries, which can lead to heart attacks and strokes. In addition, a high salt diet can cause fluid retention, which can exacerbate congestive heart failure. Therefore, it is important for older adults to reduce their intake of salt to maintain their cardiovascular health.
3) Reducing Sodium Can Improve Brain Function and Prevent Memory Loss
A high salt diet can lead to inflammation in the brain, which can adversely affect cognitive function and memory. A study in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease found that a reduction in sodium intake could help improve brain function in people with Alzheimer’s disease. In addition, a study published in the American Journal of Hypertension found that a high salt diet is associated with an increased risk of dementia. So, if you’re looking to keep your mind sharp as you age, reducing your salt intake is a good place to start.
4) Reduce your risk of having a stroke
Too much salt in your diet can increase your blood pressure, which is a major risk factor for having a stroke. A stroke occurs when the blood supply to your brain is cut off, and can cause permanent damage or even death. So it’s important to take steps to reduce your salt intake as you age.
5) Preventing Kidney Stones
As you age, your kidneys become less efficient at filtering out excess sodium and water. This can lead to a build-up of these substances in your blood and an increased risk for kidney stones. Reducing your salt intake can help prevent kidney stones from forming.
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