A Little Salt Goes A Long Way

Salt has been used as a food preservative and flavor enhancer for thousands of years. The ancient Egyptians, for example, left salted fish and birds as funeral offerings as far back as 3,000 B.C. The word “salary” comes from the Latin word “salarium”, which referred to wages paid to Roman soldiers to purchase salt.

Today, salt is everywhere, which has doctors worried. The average North American consumes about 3,400 mg of salt each day, far more than the American Heart Association’s suggested 1,500 mg (about a teaspoon).

The problem? Salt in the bloodstream tends to attract water; too much salt increases blood volume; and that creates pressure on blood vessels and the heart. The long-term effects of excessive salt consumption have been linked to heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, kidney disease, and other illnesses.

Talk with your doctor about how much salt in your diet is good for your health. By the way, don’t substitute sea salt for regular table salt in hopes of eating healthier; scientists say that both have equal chemical makeup and nutritional value.

Curious Food Facts

Here are some fun food facts to wow your friends at the next cocktail party:

• Worcestershire Sauce: Is made from dissolved fish (Anchovy).

• Coca-Cola: The original formula called for a brown color to hide impurities in early manufacturing processes.

• Strawberries: Have more vitamin C than oranges (when comparing similar serving sizes).

• Vinegar: Melts pearls due to the calcium content.

• Avocados: Have more protein than any other fruit and are poisonous to birds.

• Almonds: Are a member of the rose family.

• Honey: A food that will not spoil when stored properly.

• Cherries: Tart cherries are a natural anti-inflammatory pain reliever.

• Asparagus Urine Smell: Methanethiol, a chemical found in Asparagus, is composed mostly of sulfur with a splash of hydrogen, plus some carbon, a brew famous for the effect it produces in rotten eggs, cabbages and paper mills.

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