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To Salt or Not to Salt, diet, health and money saving tips from i-motion

Salt can be a confusing thing! On one hand doctors and scientists remind us that salt is incredibly bad for us. It essentially lowers blood pressure and increases the risk of Heart Attack and Strokes. Not good. Yet on the other hand Salt is present in sports and energy drinks and fuel. It is something we need in our diet. So the question is, to salt or not to salt?!

Salt is obviously a naturally occurring substance, it is important in the human body as it helps to control fluid balance within the body. Not only that, it controls the way your muscle and nervous system work, it’s therefore pretty important to us i-motion gym users!

However it’s not as simple as eat as much as possible! Like most things in maintaining a healthy disposition it is all a balancing act, if our salt levels are too high we get thirsty and drink, this will speed up the rate at which our kidneys dispose of salt and we risk facing the prospect of not having enough salt within our bodies! If you keep overloading your body with salt then you risk Kidney failure and heart problems.

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Similarly, if we overwork our bodies and loose excessive amounts of salt through our sweat, then we face severe dehydration. At this stage salts must be replaced, but what is the safest way of doing this? And how do we know how much?

The UK Foods Standards Agency recommends that we consume 6g (about a teaspoon) of salt per day. Most of this will already be present in the food we eat. In the case that you are eating a lot of processed or pre-prepared meals it is important to check the sodium levels within foods that you eat.

“If something you are consuming has over 1.5g of salt (or 0.5g sodium) per 100g it would be considered high salt content.”

Obviously when you come and visit us at i-motion gym you are going to lose salt through the epic workouts that you undertake, this needs replacing. For some of us the salt consumed in our everyday diet will suffice but if your workout is more endurance based you may want to consider taking salt on in liquid form. Most sports or energy drinks contain salts to help your body replenish the stocks, so why not just consume these all day everyday? In fact go the whole hog and to-do with water! You guessed it! It’s not as simple as that. Energy drinks also have sugar and many other contents which could actually be counterproductive to the hours you are putting in down at i-motion.

The truth is you need to be in tune with your body!

The best approach is to ensure you drink enough water, according to the NHS men should be consuming at least 2 litres of water whilst women should be consuming 1.6 litres of water each day. If post workout you are feeling extremely thirsty you may need to replace some of those salts. When working out the key to staying hydrated is to drink before you get thirsty, replace fluids in little and often episodes and use sports drinks if necessary. But energy drinks can be expensive…

Make your own Energy Drink

To make a sports drink is relatively straight forward. You can even get creative with it. The base ingredients are simple but there is one key difference. Two of the recipes below is a Hypotonic drink, this is purely to replace fluids and salts lost during exercise. The other recipe is Isotonic which also give you a boost of Carbohydrates, these are more appropriate for endurance, middle to long distance athletes.

Isotonic Energy Drink

Recipe 1

  • 500ml of Fresh Fruit Juice (unsweetened)
  • 500ml of Fresh Water
  • a pinch of good quality salt, finely ground (like Himalayan)

Mix together and cool in a Fridge

Recipe 2

  • 200ml of Fruit Cordial
  • 800ml of Fresh Water
  • a pinch of good quality salt, finely ground (like Himalayan)

Mix together and cool in a Fridge

Hypotonic Energy Drink

Recipe 1

  • 100ml of Fruit Cordial
  • 1L of Fresh Water
  • a pinch of good quality salt, finely ground (like Himalayan)

Mix together and cool in a Fridge

Salt is an important part of any individuals eating regime, the important thing to understand is how to control the amount we use and to regulate our intake, particularly during exercise and sport. For more information on healthy diets you can always speak to one of our PT’s at the i-motion gym or visit some of the links below for further advice. Good luck with your personal goals. We hope you found this article useful. HAPPY SALT AWARENESS WEEK!

http://www.nhs.uk

https://www.bhf.org.uk

http://www.worldactiononsalt.com

If you are interested in realising some personal fitness goals then why not give i-motion gym a try? We have membership that starts from just £9.99 a month, over 90 classes a week, 24 hour access and state of the art equipment. No excuses, just results… www.i-motiongym.com/join

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