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I cut out salt from my diet for a month. Here’s why I regret it

Published on:18 March 2021, 15:46pm IST
I thought cutting salt from my diet will help me get rid of bloating. But, my no salt diet caused various other health issues.
Nikita Bhardwaj
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No salt or low salt – what’s better? Image courtesy: Shutterstock
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“Nikita, you need to skip sugar and salt if you really want to get back in shape.”  These were the exact words of my trainer and like a good student, I followed what I was told. Trust me, I regret doing it.

Now, I don’t have a sweet tooth and that’s why avoiding sugar was easy for me. But, where I went wrong was thinking that I should skip salt from my diet.

I decided to quit salt to get rid of my bloating

I remember going up to my trainer and casually asking him for a solution to my bloating problem. His idea was to eliminate salt from my diet. Now, I made a mistake by not looking into the right amount of salt or sodium intake.

Well, sodium is needed to maintain the electrolyte balance in our body and when that goes for a toss, our body begins to react.

Here’s what happened when I cut salt out of my diet
1. Cramps

I still get jitters when I think of those muscle cramps I used to experience. Even when I was asleep, the cramps would literally make me scream and wake up in the middle of the night. Well, the cause behind them was electrolyte imbalance.

No salt means yes to killing muscle cramps. Image Courtesy : Shutterstock

In fact, the cramps also interfered with my gym routine. I would be in pain as soon as I lifted any weights. To be honest, the simple activity of running was becoming a task for me.

2. Fatigue

Plain water doesn’t suffice our electrolyte requirement. With no salt in my diet, my electrolyte balance went for a toss. I used to feel fatigued all the time. The sodium level in my body dropped drastically due to which I used to feel dizzy and tired. A little Google search informed me that this could have easily led to a condition called hyponatremia which can be very harmful. If I had continued with my no-salt policy, my health would have been badly affected.

3. Junk food craving

I don’t know if this is true for everyone cutting out salt from their diet but it surely affected me. I started craving all sorts of junk foods. All I could think of was eating fries or a bowl of noodles. There were times when I ended up binging and it obviously interfered with my weight loss mission.

Your cravings can haunt you if you go on a no salt diet. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
What I learned about salt intake

I went straight to my dietician after I started facing these problems to understand if I made the right decision by completely eliminating salt from my diet. Turns out, I was at fault. I forgot that every mineral has a role to play when it comes to our health. There is a difference between completely cutting out an ingredient and limiting its intake.

What I’ve learned through my consultation is that there is no need to completely cut out salt. It is, however, important to avoid salt post 6 PM to prevent bloating. So, I did that and I’m so thankful for it because doing so not only helped combat my bloating problem but I’ve lost some weight too!

Apart from that, those splitting headaches also reduced in frequency and I don’t feel tired anymore.

Moderate your salt consumption to stay fit. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Moral of the story

If there’s one thing all the readers can learn from my experiment is that consulting an expert before making any drastic changes to your diet is absolutely necessary. What has worked for someone you know might not work for you. We’re all different people and have unique dietary requirements.

So, I have learned my lesson and I hope that my story will help you make cautious choices.

Nikita Bhardwaj Nikita Bhardwaj

Six-pack abs are all that Nikita needs, along with her daily dose of green tea. At Health Shots, she produces videos, podcasts, stories, and other kick-ass content.