I'm a bit confused. I get in around 2800 mgs of sodium and 4800 mgs of potassium a day. It is recommended to take in less than 2300. I never put salt in my food, but my mother cooks with soy sauce and all (we're chinese) and I like to eat fish (such as smoked salmon) and sometimes olives. So thats where all this sodium comes from but it's all very healthy (except for the soy sauce maybe but it's not that bad) so what am I supposed to do about this then.
I also read on this site that the amount of sodium didn't matter as much, but the sodium : potassium ratio. It says most americans have a ratio of 6:1 and a ratio of 1:1 would be a nice thing to aim for. But since I get in so much potassium does this mean I can get in some more sodium as well? Because I even have more potassium than sodium
Also... the recommended minimum amount of potassium is 3500. While the recommended maximum amount of sodium is 2300. How is this going to become a ratio of 1:1?
Confused...do I have to cut my sodium?
PS: Also trying to lose weight, but I'm thinking about my health as well if this doesn't have anything to do with that.
Last edited by justanothagirl; 01-09-2005 at 10:16 AM.
Too much sodium over a long period of time is linked with high blood pressure, which can cause heart, kidney and circulation problems, as well as glaucoma. I have read that about 10% of the population has a "sensitivity" to salt, meaning that they produce this high blood pressure much more easily than most people even when consuming small quantities of salt. The numbers the doctors are recommending seem to me to be aimed at that "sensitive" group, since most of us don't get our blood pressure measured all that often. My personal feeling is, 1) if your blood pressure is fine then the amount of salt you're eating is probably fine, and 2) if you're so close to the recommended numbers I'd be proud and not worry about it -- most of us consume lots more salt.
Soy sauce is one of the better inventions in the world, IMHO!
Noo such thing as that 1:1 ratio of potassium to sodium. The human body needs FAR greater potassium because nature has provided no good way of preserving potassium...it's easily lost.
Sodium, on the other hand, is jealously guarded by the body and the kidneys pull it back out of the forming urine.
We need between 2,000-6,000 mg. potassium in a healthy diet, but as little as 500 mg. sodium will allow us to operate just fine.
So if you keep your potassium at 4,800 and keep your sodium below 2,300 OR LOWER, you'll do just fine.
Perhaps the 1:1 ratio comes from the rationale that 2 grams represents the minimum amount of potassium that is desirable and the maximum amount of sodium.
Oh okay, well I changed my diet a bit. For the past week my average intake has been 2100 grams of sodium and 3300 mgs of potassium a day. I'm trying to aim for an average of 3600 mgs potassium a day, and 1800 mgs of sodium.
Sodium is an element. It is highly reactive and thus is never exists by itself outside a laboratory. It combines with ANYTHING in the vicinity to make a stable compound. When it combines with chlorine (ALSO very reactive) the result is the EXTREMELY stabe compound we know as sodium chloride or table SALT: one molecule of sodium and one molecule of chlorine: NaCl.