What Is Sodium? Sodium In Foods And Its Sources
What Is Sodium?
Healthy food engenders wealthy mood and therefore, it is aptly said: To eat is a necessity, but to eat intelligently is an art.
The human body is a complex structure. It is indeed, quite an onerous task for a layman to understand this rich system.
The human body develops and grows by the number of essential nutrients that work in proper co-ordination with each other.
These nutrients consist of the inorganic materials, which are commonly termed as minerals and that work for the proper functioning of the human body. One such important inorganic substance is Sodium.
Now, What is sodium? One mineral that is most underrated yet the deficiency of sodium may have serious consequences. Read on to know the chief role of Sodium in Foods.
Sodium is a chemical element, an essential electrolyte, which is of paramount importance in our life. An unbelievable fact to hear, but Sodium is an alkali earth metal and can get from rich sodium foods.
It is a mineral which is ubiquitous. From the everyday food that we consume, to the sweat that our body releases, it is found everywhere.
It might be bizarre to hear or read, but you cannot live without Sodium.
Function Of Sodium In Human Body:
Sodium is to body what oxygen is to life. It has a prime role to play for controlling various functions in the human body.
Sodium is extracted from Sodium foods and dissolved in the blood and in the fluid that surrounds the cells in the human body.
It is the requisite mineral that our body requires for the regulation of muscle and nerve functions as well as for the control of blood pressure.
Sodium in foods help maintain the water balance in the body. Let’s discuss in points the chief function of sodium in Human Body:
- Sodium controls the blood pressure in the body. By the dint of it being located in the blood, sodium attracts water and thereby helps maintaining the liquid portion of the blood. However, too low or too much sodium in food may cause problems for the body that shall be discussed further.
- This important mineral carries an electrical charge which in common parlance is termed electrolyte. This electrolyte aids in the muscle contraction in the human body.
- The electrolyte also assists the nerves in communicating with other nerves thus enabling them to function properly.
- It maintains the fluid balance or the pH balance in the body.
Sources Of Sodium:
Most often people tend to confuse Sodium with Salt, more precisely Table Salt.
However, it is to be kept in mind that Table Salt is Sodium Chloride and there are other sources of sodium that enter in our body.
No doubts in the fact that Sodium in foods is essential for human nutrition and that is a reactive chemical element.
But obviously, you wouldn’t want to eat Sodium in its raw form, would you?
So here are enlisted the top Sources of Sodium that you should note:
- Salt, the most primary source of sodium.
- Processed cheese
- Eggs and Omelettes
- Chicken Dishes
- Milk and other dairy products
- Sauces and Salad Dressings
- Roasted and Salted Nuts – like Almonds, Cashews And Pistachios
- Snacks including salted peanuts and popcorn
Now you know that primarily sodium in foods are the main source. These foods are sources of sodium that you can include in your meals for maintaining an exact balance of sodium in body.
Sodium In Foods:
Sodium is a naturally occurring element in most of the foods but is also added in packaged foods in the form of salt or other inorganic substances and food additives.
These may be in the form of Baking Soda, Monosodium Glutamate (MSG), etc.
Sodium in Foods Chart:
The chart below represents the content of sodium in foods we consume:
|Sodium mg per 100 grams|
|Alcoholic beverage, Beer (240g)
|Lemonade, carbonated drinks(240g)
|Brown bread slice(25g)
Sodium In Food Good Or Bad:
It is befitting to say that Excess Of Everything Is Harmful. Nevertheless, deficiency of anything is also harmful, especially when we are talking in context of the human body.
Sodium is unquestionably the vital element for basic processes for life. It is therefore, needless to say that sodium foods when taken in moderation is the best.
Eating in limits is the sensible approach to resolve this debate, that sodium in food is good or bad.