Struggling to kick the cravings? Did you know that salt may play a key role?
Most people are aware of the damaging effects of sugar but fewer know how important salt is when it comes to curbing sugar cravings. First, let’s dive into an overview of what salt does because it’s pretty amazing!
Salt is needed…
⚡ To maintain the optimal amount of blood in our body
⚡ By the heart to pump blood throughout our body
⚡ For digestion and cell to cell communication
⚡ For bone formation and strength
⚡ For the prevention of dehydration.
Low salt has a number of health risks associated with it such as…
⚡ Heart disease (It can actually magnify our risk)
⚡ Increase heart rate
⚡ Compromise kidney function and adrenal insufficiency
⚡ Higher triglycerides
⚡ High Cholesterol
⚡ Insulin levels and…
⚡ Ultimately insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes, which is where we circle back to the sugar connection.
Chronic salt depletion may be a factor in “Internal Starvation”. When you restrict salt intake the body starts to panic. One of the defense mechanisms is to increase insulin levels, insulin is known for its role in shuttling glucose to cells but it also helps the kidneys retain more sodium.
Chronically high insulin results in energy being shuttled off to fat cells and can also mean you’ll have more trouble breaking down stored fat cells into fatty acids.
Therefore the only nutrient the body can efficiently use for energy is carbohydrates…and the vicious cycle of carb cravings continues.
So you see that ditching sugar (I would include refined carbs) for salt has a two-fold effect, you reduce cravings and help your body utilize the body’s fat stores.
Most of this information was taken from the book “The Salt Fix” by Dr James Dinicolantonio Cardiovascular Research Scientist. I highly recommend it if you are looking to dive into the history (fraud) or find out exactly how much salt does. There is way more to it than the salt/sugar connection. Stress, fertility, pregnancy, and kidney health are a few that stood out for me.