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Wikenigma - an Encyclopedia of Unknowns Wikenigma - an Encyclopedia of the Unknown

Salt preferences

Sodium deficiency is rare in humans, the physiological need for salt has been calculated at around 1.3 grams per day for an adult - but, given the opportunity, most people consume far more than this. Leading to the idea that there must be an inbuilt preference to consume more salt than is actually required.

Bearing in mind that excess salt intake has been linked to a number of health hazards, it's not clear how the desire for salt has evolved above the level for healthy living.

Throughout life, our love of salt peaks and dips. Salt flavours our food and promotes its consumption and thus possibly obesity; it sustains and protects us in physical exertion, may occasionally be remedial, contributes to our growth and ailments and generates controversy
Nonetheless, salt itself is inedible.
The attribution of this complexity to early dietary exposure and processed food is unsubstantiated, as well as inadequate.The fundamental question persists of why we love the taste of salt."

Source : British Journal of Nutrition Volume 123 Issue 11

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