Micro-nutrients: Minerals (Sodium)

Description of sodium, sources, functions, deficiency and excess.

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- Sodium in the form of Sodium Chloride is Salt which is found in food and the body.

-According to British Nutrition Foundation average intake of salt is:

~ 11g a day = men and 8.1g a day = women, when reccomendation is 6g.

- Work is underway to reduce amount of salt in foods, however public have a huge part to play at 20% of salt is used in the home.

Sources of Sodium

- food containing high amounts: bacon, sausages, pies, meaty products, kippers, smoked fish, butter, margarine, canned veg, bread and breakfast cereals.

- A lot also added in the home during cooking.

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Functions of Sodium:

- Sodium and Potassium are involved in the transmission of nerve impulses and muscle contractions.

- Regulate body water content and electrolyte balance.

Symptoms of deficiency:   - muscle cramps

- heat exhaustion= loss of sodium when doing a lot of exercise and sweating too much.

Symptoms of excess: - high blood pressure which can lead to heart disease or strokes.

- Young children and babies cannot have excessive salt as their kidneys are not developed enough to cope.

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