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A Sprinkle of Salt May Brighten Your Mood

But Too Much Can Lead to High Blood Pressure

By Cari Martens

A study by the University of Iowa suggests that perhaps you shouldn’t feel guilty about shaking a little salt onto your fries or flank steak.

The researchers say salt acts as a natural anti-depressant, which may explain why we crave it in spite of the health risks with consuming too much of it. While too much can lead to high blood pressure and heart disease, a lack of it could cause ‘psychological depressions,’ the study said.

The University of Iowa researchers discovered that rats began to behave erratically and shun foods and activities they normally enjoyed when they were deprived of salt.

Psychologist Kim Johnson, who led the team, told the journal Physiology and Behaviour: ‘Things that normally would be pleasurable for rats didn’t elicit the same degree of relish. This leads us to believe that a salt deficit and the craving associated with it can induce one of the key symptoms associated with depression.’

Johnson went on to say, ‘This suggests that salt need and cravings may be linked to the same brain pathways as those related to drug addiction and abuse.’

Have you had your ‘fix’ of salt today?

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