Cutting back on your sugar and refined carbohydrates will generally leave you craving salt on top of the other emotional and chemical ties you may have with sugar.

Insulin is central to the science behind the salt cravings.

Once you decrease the carbohydrate intake then the flow-on effect is a relative increase in salt excretion. That in itself is the body normalising, but some people can feel the headaches come on which they were not expecting.

Remember, carbohydrate is just glucose.

When you have a food intake full of carbohydrates, that is a massive glucose load to the system. You may be surprised to know how much glucose is actually in bread, rice, pasta and potato.

The body can only effectively metabolise 1 teaspoon of glucose into the brain and muscle at one time. Anything that you ingest above that amount is turned into fat under the direct effect of insulin

The indirect effect of insulin is to retain salt via the kidneys.

Therefore, if you are used to a moderate or high carbohydrate load as part of the Standard Australian Diet then you will be producing a lot of insulin to utilise the carbohydrates, which will mean a lot of insulin production.

The indirect effect of insulin is to retain salt via the kidneys. Increased insulin production and subsequent salt retention is linked with fluid retention, hypertension and cardiovascular disease.

You may like to read more on salt, not sugar as aetiological in hypertension and cardiometabolic disease in the research "The wrong white crystals" James J DiNicolantonio and Sean C Lucan​

Remember, once you decrease your carbohydrate intake the flow on effect is a relative increase in salt excretion and some people may experience headaches for a few days (to a couple of weeks) depending on the change to their carbohydrate intake.

Each person has their own health journey. Some choose to embrace Low Carbohydrate, Healthy Fat full on and others take their time, making slow sustainable changes as they see fit. We would encourage whatever works best for you :-) If you would like some support to make changes to your diet or have health issues that require specific nutrition advice please contact our team at Nutrition for Life via our website or call us on 03 63019096. We provide an Australian wide service.

OK, a few tips to help with those headaches ...

*Add salt to nuts.

*Add salt to meals.

*Use salted butter.

*Try a spoon of Vegemite if you are game, or spread some vegemite onto some of our low carb nut and seed crackers.

*Add salt to broths which are rich in nutrients.

*Add Seaweed or Dulcie Flakes to soups and salads.

Natural salt versus Iodised salt?

The purists will argue against iodised salt because of its processing. Here in Tasmania there is a high rate of Iodine depletion conditions such as thyroid disease. Iodised salt has helped the community as a whole.

Are the ‘natural’ salts better. A quick look around the internet reveals an enormous amount of hype and marketing on one form over another. And a lot of chemical analyses suggesting a whole lot of chemicals in the mined rock salts.

Let's keep it simple. Evaporated sea salts are probably the cleanest but you still need some Iodine in your diet. Other natural sources of Iodine include fish, dairy, eggs and seaweed, particularly if you are in an Iodine depleted community.

#nutritionforlife #choosehealthNFL

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