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Bloated. Is Sodium the Culprit? Know how much is too much

One of the number one reasons for the belly bloat is sodium. It's in just about everything. We know it best as salt. It's in processed foods, canned foods, frozen foods and condiments so it can be tricky to stay away from. Sodium is not our friend when we are trying to lose weight. Sodium attracts water and stays in the cells. This leaves you with the aweful bloating feeling you have after eating Chinese food the night before. To burn fat we need water running through our body to metabolize the fat. If it's all caught up in our cells, then we inturn burn fat at a much slower pace.

You can't completely avoid sodium since it's in, well just about everything we eat, but we can make healthier choices that have less sodium. It's true, our bodies also need sodium to survive. A deficiency in sodium can lead to a serious health condition called hyponatremia. Symptoms include headache and nausea. Hyponatremia left untreated can cause seizures and coma.

As I always say, it's about balance so be conscious of how much sodium you're eating, and cut back where you can. The key is in knowing how much sodium you need a day. Below are some tips to help you in that direction:

  • Shoot for a minimum of 1,000 milligrams a day to maximize fat-burning and get the benefits of sodium for your health; 1,500 mg a day is more realistic and reccomended for most.

  • Read the labels! Bfore you throw it in the buggie check out the sodium content per serving. Knowing how much you need a day will help you decide if it would be a good choice.

  • Avoid canned foods, pre-packaged foods and processed meats. Choose the fresh meat at the deli with less sodium.

  • Lightly use condiments full of sodium. (soy sauce, salsa, mustard, table salt)

  • Be aware that pickled foods are high in sodium and steer clear from them as much as possible.

  • Flavor your foods with other options such as olive oil, garlic, lemons, lime, fresh seasonings such as rosemary, basil and thyme. A sprinkle of salt can marry all of the ingrediants but don't drown your food in it.

“Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.”

1 Corinthians 6:19-20

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