Did you know you need Sodium to Survive?

by Katie O’Grady

Why does sodium get such a bad rap?

Sodium has a negative reputation since it is linked to high blood pressure and other heart issues, which can result in a heart attack or stroke. Your body needs sodium to survive, but your kidneys can’t keep up with the process of excreting it in large amounts. Unfortunately, much of the sodium we consume comes from prepackaged and prepared foods. That’s because sodium is frequently used as a preservative or flavor enhancer—either as salt, or a different component of other flavorings. Sodium, or salt, is an effective preservative because it reduces the water activity of foods. Water activity is the amount of unbound water available for microbial growth and chemical reactions. More simply, salt plays an important role in reducing the growth of pathogens and organisms that may cause food to spoil or shorten a food’s shelf life. Most foods with high levels of sodium are found in the grocery store’s middle aisles. Shop on the perimeters of your grocery store for low-sodium items; this is usually where you’ll find fruit, vegetables, chicken, and other low-sodium foods.

So, what is the point of sodium?

Sodium or salt does a lot more than preserve your food and/or make it taste better. In normal amounts, you need sodium to stay hydrated. In fact, it is one of the most essential electrolytes in hydration.

Sodium works by:

  • Pulling fluids into the body
  • Helping to maintain fluid volume
  • Decreasing urine output

Have you ever heard someone recommend that you consume a sports drink instead of water after a workout? This is because, when you exercise, you lose salt through your sweat. Sports drinks include sodium, which helps you stay hydrated for longer by allowing you to retain the water you drink and replace the sodium you lost through perspiration. If you drink only water and are not taking in enough sodium you can develop a rare condition called hyponatremia, which occurs when the insides of your cells flood with water due to abnormally low sodium and/or other electrolyte levels in your blood stream. 

 

Cancer treatment and the importance of staying hydrated.

Diarrhea, vomiting, fevers, infection, and just not drinking enough fluids are all side effects of cancer treatment that can leave you dehydrated. Dehydration is a dangerous condition that can have life-threatening consequences. Fluids provide nutrients to cells, remove bacteria from your bladder, protect your organs from long term treatment damage, and help to avoid constipation.

Staying hydrated is critical while receiving cancer treatment. Many patients experiencing dehydration are admitted to the hospital in need of IV fluids. Properly managing hydration levels helps to decrease the risk of dehydration and unnecessary trips to the hospital.

 Here is a list of signs that you maybe dehydrated:

  • Dry mouth
  • Loose, crinkly skin
  • Little or no urine output
  • Dark urine
  • headache or dizziness
  • Decreased energy

 

The solution to dehydration and cancer treatment side effects.

 

There is a solution to assist with dehydration and other GI related cancer treatment side effects, including diarrhea and nausea.

Enterade Advanced Oncology Formula is a plant based, medical food that is clinically proven to reduce the gastrointestinal side effects of cancer treatment. Using Hydro Active Technology, enterade is formulated to hydrate better than leading sports drinks, oral rehydration solutions, and even water. Unlike sports drinks, enterade also helps to rebuild the cells that line your intestines, fortifying your gut against the damage caused by cancer treatments. Additionally, popular sports drinks and oral rehydration solutions may work to rehydrate, but their high sugar content could exacerbate diarrhea, causing increased discomfort.

Enterade has no sugar for this reason and has a very mild taste which was intended to be more palatable for cancer patients.
Enterade helps to manage diarrhea, nausea, dehydration, unwanted weight loss and fatigue. Feel better and fight harder with enterade!

*Always consult with a doctor if you are on a low sodium diet before trying enterade. *

 

References 

Sodium in Your Diet | FDA

Water intoxication: What happens when you drink too much water? (medicalnewstoday.com)

Cancer treatment side effect: Dehydration | MD Anderson Cancer Center

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK50952/

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