Sodium in drinking water - everything you need to know about it
Sodium in tap water is a natural ingredient and is important for many bodily functions. But what is sodium, where does it occur and how much of the element is healthy for the human body?
WHAT IS SODIUM?
Sodium is a chemical element that is often present in nature. Sodium is one of the ten most commonly represented elements in the Earth's crust. However, the element doesn’t occur naturally in pure form, but bound to other elements called sodium salts. The most well-known form is table salt (sodium chloride), which is an important source of sodium for the human organism. Sodium in drinking water not only provides the body with the vital element, it also contributes decisively to the taste of the water.
Sodium values for an adequate intake | Source: https://www.dge.de
WHAT IS THE SIGNIFICANCE OF SODIUM FOR THE HUMAN BODY?
Sodium is a vital element for the human organism. The recommended daily allowance (RDA) of sodium for adults in the UK is 2.4g per day according to Public Health England (PHE). Together with chloride and potassium, the element is one of the most important electrolytes for the body. Sodium regulates the water balance and influences blood pressure and kidney function. It has a major influence on the acid-base balance and controls cell function and our immune systems. Many processes at cellular level are only possible by means of sodium, it contributes to the normal function and health of skin, bones, muscles and connective tissue. In addition, it prevents certain minerals from accumulating.
HOW MUCH SODIUM IN DRINKING WATER IS HEALTHY FOR US?
How much sodium is healthy in tap water depends heavily on your age, lifestyle and health. For infants and young children, low sodium in drinking water is recommended. This also applies to people with high blood pressure or impaired renal function, who should generally eat low-salt diets. Athletes, on the other hand, lose many electrolytes through sweat and are welcome to compensate for the losses with a lot of sodium in drinking water. The amount of sodium in drinking water varies significantly depending on where you live. It of course comes down to the natural filtering process and what is in the ground when water is collected.
THE RIGHT AMOUNT OF SODIUM IN DRINKING WATER
If you want to increase the amount of sodium in tap water on hot days or after exercise to compensate for the losses caused by sweating, simply add a pinch of salt to the water. If, on the other hand, you need particularly low sodium in tap water, e.g. for health reasons or for baby food and drinks, you need a powerful water filter.