Go Paleo to reduce your sodium consumption
Time and again, we've all had to endure the tight squeeze of the blood pressure cuff in the doctor's office.
And if the reading comes back even just a little higher than the ridiculously low standard that conventional medicine has set, you'll get a good talking-to about your salt intake.
It's true, eating too much salt can make your body retain water, and water retention is a known culprit of high blood pressure.
And high blood pressure is, indeed, a risk factor for heart attack and stroke.
But don't rush home and throw out the salt shaker just yet -- because a new study published in the May issue of Circulation has found that most of the excessive salt in your diet doesn't come from home cooking.
It's from the drive-thru!
In the study, researchers followed the daily diets of 450 people between the ages of 18 and 74. Now, the recommended serving of salt for the average American is just one teaspoon a day -- but it turns out that the folks in the study were eating over 50 percent MORE than that.
But only 5 percent of all that salt came from adding salt while they prepared a home-cooked meal... and another 5 percent came from sprinkling some salt on as a finishing touch.
The remaining 90 percent? Store-bought foods and restaurant meals.
A whopping 71 percent of the salt came from things like crackers, soups, dressings, cake and pancake mixes, frozen foods, and pretty much everything in the snack aisle.
That means there's a remarkably easy way to get off that salt wagon: Go Paleo.
When you go to the grocery store, shop only the outer aisles. That's where you'll find all the fresh meats, seafood, vegetables, and fruits that naturally keep your BP in check.
But If you ask me, it's just too easy for conventional doctors to diagnose you with high blood pressure based on one reading at one time on one day.
Most docs aren't taking into account the whole picture -- including what your blood pressure trend has been over a longer period of time.
To be honest, some folks just have naturally higher blood pressure. And so, the "limits" that the mainstream medical community put out -- that is, the threshold between "high" and "low" blood pressure -- might not necessarily apply to you.
No matter what your BP is, you don't want your salt intake to get TOO low -- because getting too little salt could KILL you.
So, as you're spending more time cooking fresh food at home, experiment with some of the flavorful and exotic Himalayan and Hawaiian salts that are available. Whether pink, red, or even black, they're incredibly rich in minerals and have been shown to have a number of health benefits.
Just keep it to a dash or a pinch.