Not striving for an intro today – I’m ready to get down to business!
We’re talking nutrition today (just so you know) and not our fluctuating hormonal moods.
Science changes every day of the week. Sometimes
when I’m dorking out when I’m researching I think science changes upon the hour.
A couple weeks back I was in the gym and on cool down mode so I pulled out my phone as I finished up a 45 minute mountain climb (sounds exciting I know but you should see my rear end…) I had an email sent to me regarding salt.
If you’re like me you grew up with grandparents who were constantly limiting salt and salt intake. This was because they had had a diagnosis of high blood pressure, angina, heart attack, or just straight up heart disease. I had one grandmother who used salt subs and sugar subs like they were going out of style. For my taste buds they had gone out of style but that’s another topic.
Science is spinning us on our sides again. Now researchers are suggesting that for those of us who work out regularly (back at it as of July 29th!) we need to make sure we’re getting in a little extra salt.
Salt makes up a MAJOR portion of your body’s chemistry. Salt keeps our cells functioning. Also the water in our body has quite the salt content. When we sweat (and believe you me this girl SWEATS like none other) we lose salt. When you cry you lose a tiny bit of salt.
Research has now shown that highly active adults who are decreasing their salt intake are actually wreaking a dose of havoc on their bodies. We are not replenishing our body’s critical salts after work outs.
When we fail to replenish that salt we lost we get a lot of problems, guys! The first issue and what I think could be the biggest is that if we’re curbing our salt intake at our own pleasure when we are working out then this can cause some insulin resistance. Our cells live in a salty atmosphere – when we work out hard and have a very detrimented atmosphere of salt then our insulin levels will rise. (And you thought it had to do solely with carbs and sugar…so did I.) When our insulin levels rise we start storing fats. Because of the increase in our insulin levels our blood fills up with bad stuff like glucose (sugar) and fatty material which as you know….is bad news.
So my little lovies do yourself a favor. If you are working out hard and sweating like a mother then you need to make sure you are kind when it comes to salt. Don’t fear it but be smart about it.
“Sports Drinks” a la Gatorade has an increased sodium level. I’m not a fan of sports drinks but when you work out you may want to have a small bottle of Gatorade or Powerade at your side so you can rehydrate and help keep those salt levels inside yourself at a happy medium. This will also help your muscles! Your muscles need salt to perform well. Sipping or gulping that sports drink can help you decrease your chances of muscle strain/injury during a work out. That’s good news!
Now the sweet part!
If you’re working to decrease your sugar intake then guess what will help you? Salt! Yes, friends, a little salt here and there makes the sweet craving go away! That doesn’t mean binge some Pringles to keep away from the Oreos. That means sip some electrolytes (no more than half a cup) to cut your sugar intake down a bit.
How cool is that?
Not all salt is created equal?
Try to stear clear of table salt. It is missing many minerals due to being heavily stripped in the processing.
Sea Salt has a trace minerals but offers a hefty taste because the granuals are larger.
Himalayan Pink salt is packed with hefty minerals as it is lightest processed salt. This should be your go to and guess what? It can be found nearly anywhere!
This graphic is fabulous to explain a little about the two salts that we are very familiar with and not too incredbily used to!
And while I’m wrapping this post up let’s talk a bit about anyone who works on the regular’s favorite salt…
Epsom salt is the cure all of cure alls. This salt actually does help with muscle aches and pains. How many of us can swear by it? I can! Last December I severely damaged a lower abdominal muscle and epsom was my jam to help alleviate the pain.
The next time you are super sore from a good hard core work out (or maybe you had one heck of a stressful day) try this concoction to help you feel better!
Disclaimers: If you have heart disease do what your doctor tells you. If you have high blood pressure do what your doctor tells you. If you have any medical issues that deal with sugar and or salt you need to talk to your doctor!!!! This post was written for those of us who do not suffer from any major health ailments!
Now let’s get salty!
Or um yeah….DO WORK!