There’s no denying that social media has changed our lives, but it seems it has also altered our perception of healthy eating, and more specifically, the amount of salt we should be consuming.
Social media has become a big part of our lives. Could you imagine going even just a day without checking your Facebook or Twitter profile? For most, it would be a huge struggle. So it’s not hard to see how people can become influenced by the posts they see on their phones.
The fitness and wellbeing industry has exploded in the last few years, with healthy living, lifestyle and clean eating posts now dominating the feeds of all of the major social networks. Whilst in some ways this is good, as it is helping to encourage people to make healthier lifestyle choices when it comes to food and exercise, there is also a dark side to this craze. Specific accounts and influencers are urging followers to adopt strict diets, ban certain food groups and avoid foods deemed by them to be ‘bad’.
These accounts appear to show us what we should be eating and make us feel bad for choosing things seen as ‘unhealthy.’ But it’s important to remember that social media is merely a snapshot of reality – and is definitely not the whole picture. Yes, you saw a picture of a perfect kale salad and green juice someone had for lunch, but you probably didn’t see the packet of chocolate cookies consumed after!
Salt is one of the foods that has been somewhat demonised on social media. When consumed in excess, salt can be harmful, just like anything in excess (you can read more about that here). But the fact that salt is an essential mineral and too little can be harmful to our health, is very rarely discussed.
It’s important to remember that many of the influencers on social media are not nutritionists or dietitians and their advocation of restrictive and extreme diets can be harmful to followers. Balance is the key to our health, and that includes our salt intake. So our advice – take everything you see on social media with a ‘pinch of salt’ and do what works for you!