Dietary Salt: a Blessing in Disguise

With the cost of health care sky-rocketing, people nowadays are on the look-out more traditional and alternative forms of healing. This could include acupuncture, massage, meditation, naturopathy, and even energy procedures like Reiki to mention a few.

This means that more study will go into natural healing and one such study has concluded that salty foods could have immune-boosting properties.

Study author Jonathan Jantsch has this to say, “Salt has been regarded as a detrimental dietary factor, up to now [but] Our current study challenges this one-sided view and suggests that increasing salt accumulation at the site of infections might be an ancient strategy to ward off infections, long before antibiotics were invented.”

A microbiologist at Universitätsklinikum Regensburg and Universität Regensburg, Jantsch goes on to say, “A further understanding of the regulatory cascades might not only help to design drugs that specifically enhance local salt deposition and help to combat infectious diseases, but also may lead to novel strategies to mobilize sodium stores in the ageing population and prevent cardiovascular disease.”

Jantsch’s theory is supported by  Professor Jens Titze from Vanderbilt University “Despite the overwhelming evidence linking dietary salt to disease in humans, the probable evolutionary benefit of storing so much salt in the body has not been clear.”

The evidence came when they found that experiments in which mice were given a high salt diet they showed increased immunity against microbial infections due to increased activity of macrophage immune cells.

This conclusion came upon when laboratory mice were given a high salt diet and they exhibited an increased immunity against microbial infections due to growth activity of macrophage immune cells.

Even if this evidence is startling, Jantsch warns that it is not a conclusive that everyone should start adding unnecessary salt to their diet. While the benefit of natural salt can be beneficial to the immunity booster, increasing our intake of salt —particularly in large quantity and abruptly —can be extremely detrimental to our health.

It would still be judicious to consult a health professional- a doctor,  nutritionist or dietician on a case-by-case basis.


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