Message Boards » Food and Nutrition

TOPIC: How much does sodium affect my weight loss?

← Previous 1
← Previous 1
 
Ic_disabled_photos
Topic has been inactive for 30 days or more and images have been disabled.
Display All Images
July 18, 2012 3:58 PM
I have been on MFP for about 2 months and I have lost about 7 pounds. Which is a decent amout, but the problem is I lost about 5 pounds in the first month and only 2 pounds in the past month or so. I have about 75-100 pounds to lose, so would have thought the weight would have come off more quickly once I started/and continued to eat well and excercise. I don't know why my loss has stalled and I was wondering how sodium plays a roll in weight loss. I looked back over my diaries and noticed I eat about 3000 mg of sodium a day. I didn't even realize it was that much because I didn't have sodium as one of my columns for tracking.

I mean if I eat pretty much the same things with the same amount of sodium all the time wouldn't I always carry the same amount of water weight, and therefore my weight loss wouldn't be affected, right? It makes sense to me, but am I wrong? Do I need to try to eat waaaay less sodium? Would I lose more weight?

Please enlighten me. :)
  145858
July 18, 2012 4:03 PM
I'd love to know more as well, thanks for creating this topic :)
  13551725
July 18, 2012 4:03 PM
Eating more sodium might make you retain water and make the number on the scale go up even though that weight is just water.
Some people will also feel a little bloated if they have a lot of sodium, but this can be counteracted by drinking more water.
But it doesn't affect your weight loss at all.
Foods high in sodium usually are high in calories and usually dont' have a very good macronutrient breakdown.
Eating a high sodium diet without increasing your potassium intake can cause heart problems such as high blood pressure, and too little sodium can cause low blood pressure. Try to keep your intake around/under 2500mg.
Edited by uglyhobo On July 18, 2012 4:06 PM
July 18, 2012 4:05 PM
It would affect the gains you'd have from too much sodium and then the loss of water may be mistaken for fat loss. I don't think it affects the way you actually lose weight though.
You would be healthier if you had 2500mg or less of sodium per day however. I use to just pour on the salt because I had no reason not to and then out of the blue I ended up with high blood pressure. It does make HBP worse. and some studies have shown that it causes high blood pressure. I'll never know if that's why I got it but if I could go back, I'd eat less of it.
Once you start eating less of it you don't really miss it. In fact, it's hard for me to eat any processed, frozen meals or canned foods now because they taste too salty. Now I cook most meals from scratch to control the sodium intake and I feel like I can actually taste more of the food flavor also.
  15245486
July 18, 2012 4:06 PM
Your entire diet is processed foods. IF you dropped the processed foods and ate fresh fruits, veggies, and proteins you would easily be dropping 2 lbs a week with 60-70 lbs to lose and a 1300-1500 calorie diet.

**edit** which in turn would cut ur sodium down 65%..
Edited by Hezzietiger1 On July 18, 2012 4:07 PM
  16845029
July 18, 2012 4:08 PM
There may be health benefits for you if you reduce your sodium intake, but increased fat loss isn't among them. As others have stated, sodium might trick the scale due to water retention.
July 18, 2012 4:09 PM
If you drink enough water and weigh yourself in the morning right after a bathroom break, you should see almost no affect from Sodium and your most accurate weight. I eat that much sodium a lot, but my body does get rid of it pretty easily too (I have been told medically I cannot drink plain water when I sweat much - which is a lot in Florida - as my fingers go numb and I eventually pass out) so I guess I might be a little friendlier with sodium than the average person, lol...

The first month was probably a good bit of water weight, so your second month is probably more accurate. Sounds like you may need to adjust your calorie intake/exercise habits instead of looking so much at sodium. I don't go by what MFP recommends and many people don't. Adjust it until you find what works for you, and use calculators such as on fitnessfrog to give you a place to start.
  12396029
July 18, 2012 4:10 PM
I have always been a major salt-aholic. Today, starting at lunch, was the first time I had honestly attempted to lower the sodium. I did NOT pick up the shaker at all. I'm hoping it will help in my loss as well, figure it sure can't hurt. Our foods are loaded with enough salt already in it, don't need to add.
  26150621
July 18, 2012 4:12 PM
IMO your sodium and your carbs are contributing to your lack of weight loss. Too much sodium can make you retain water. Some women who have struggled with their weight for years have issues metabolizing carbs, called "insulin resistance". Once you cut your carbs down low enough that your body can metabolize them, the weight starts dropping off.

I spent 3 months busting my booty in the gym for 90 minutes 3-4x a week and following the MFP suggested macros. I lost 7 pounds, but I struggled to lose every ounce. I cut my carbs down to under 100g net and lost 8lbs the first month. The second month I lost 6lbs. I'm in the third month now and hoping to lose another 6lbs.
  9724253
July 18, 2012 4:13 PM
Exactly what I was going to say. Cut the processed foods and you will notice a huge difference!

QUOTE:

Your entire diet is processed foods. IF you dropped the processed foods and ate fresh fruits, veggies, and proteins you would easily be dropping 2 lbs a week with 60-70 lbs to lose and a 1300-1500 calorie diet.

**edit** which in turn would cut ur sodium down 65%..
  3595208
July 18, 2012 4:15 PM
I'm on a low sodium diet of 1,500 mg per day. Which means I can't eat anything from a can/box/freezer unless it has no sodium added. I've cut out red meats and stick to fish, chicken and turkey, but you have to be careful because they add a sodium solution to chicken and turkey to make it stay fresher longer. Even some vegetables are high in sodium. I've invested in low and no sodium bouillon and soup bases to help with the lower sodium meals. It's been about a month and I'm beginning to not miss it and my daily 'cheat' of baked lays tastes really salty. I've been losing 2-4 pounds a week, by eating my bmr calories (or trying to). (i am on the low sodium/low calcium diet for my kidneys, not weight loss)

Good Luck!!
Edited by andreamkelly On July 18, 2012 4:17 PM
  22571144
July 18, 2012 4:15 PM
I drastically cut my sodium recently - to stick around 1500 or less on a day to day basis. I feel better - and I believe it does help with weight loss. I cut my sodium and upped my calories to 2000 recently to break a plateau - and it worked. :) Not sure which to attribute it to but I think it's a combination of both. Also if you're high on sodium, increase your water intake.
  9604811
July 18, 2012 4:17 PM
I know for me... if I consume too much sodium my body will react by retaining water. sick I also feel sluggish. (and sometimes will go "on the hunt" for something sweet to counter the salty... Oops! embarassed ) Usually, an increased water intake will help the body to flush out the extra water. drinker Some people have to take a water pill, though.
I try not to over-do the sodium, but sometimes it happens & I definitely feel it. It does seem to affect my weight as my body seems to cling on whatever moisture it can get while it's trying to flush the extra sodium out.
  7160728
July 18, 2012 4:17 PM
The problem with those 'low fat', 'lean cuisine' processed foods is that they pack in the salt & often the sugar to make up for the lack of flavour in the product. To reduce your sodium intake you need to reduce your reliance on these types of snacks & meals.
Giving up/cutting down on excess salt is like giving up sugar - it takes a while but once done it's hard to go back to tasting that level of salt or sugar.
  18204464
July 18, 2012 4:20 PM
My thoughts on this (part opinion and part from my RN background) - sodium doesn't affect weight loss long-term. You may see daily fluctuations in weight due to sodium intake and water, but long term... no effect.

If you take in the same amount of sodium from day to day (be that 100 mg or 4000 mg), your body acclimates.
  3380893
July 18, 2012 4:22 PM
Have you increased your exercise? If you are building muscle, your short-term loss might be less than you would expect. However, since muscle uses more calories than fat, longer term you will lose weight more quickly.

I lost less weight the first weeks than I expected, but my measurements are better.

It would not be the sodium.
July 18, 2012 4:24 PM
Mortons Lite Salt is 1/2 sodium and 1/2 potassium. Great way to get potassium which helps move water out of your system.
  13449261
July 18, 2012 4:24 PM
QUOTE:

My thoughts on this (part opinion and part from my RN background) - sodium doesn't affect weight loss long-term. You may see daily fluctuations in weight due to sodium intake and water, but long term... no effect.

If you take in the same amount of sodium from day to day (be that 100 mg or 4000 mg), your body acclimates.


This is what I was going to say. I have a diet that is higher on the sodium, but it is consistent. It does not affect my weight loss except for minor fluctuations from day to day.
  8953086
July 18, 2012 4:24 PM
QUOTE:

I've invested in low and no sodium bouillon and soup bases to help with the lower sodium meals.

Good Luck!!


I do low sodium because of my health as well. If you have the time Google Vegetable Broth from scraps, it can be frozen and used instead of the bullion and is so much more tastier
July 18, 2012 4:25 PM
For me, personally, I want to cut the salt down first of all to bring my blood pressure down. However, I have noticed that when I eat foods with more sodium I tend to eat more. In addition it can push me into a salty-sweet cycle. I've found by doing my best to minimize salt intake and increasing herbs and spices, my taste buds seem to wake up and I feel much more satisfied on less food. So in a a round-about-way it does impact my weight loss.
  18232262
July 18, 2012 4:26 PM
QUOTE:

Your entire diet is processed foods. IF you dropped the processed foods and ate fresh fruits, veggies, and proteins you would easily be dropping 2 lbs a week with 60-70 lbs to lose and a 1300-1500 calorie diet.

**edit** which in turn would cut ur sodium down 65%..


agree with this 100%

Losing weight is basically eat less calories than you burn.... but for consistent and healthy weight loss you have to look at the quality of the foods you eat. When i first started I tried to eat the same fast food I had become used too... but found that preparing my meals myself was best.

and you'll feel better eating healthy foods vs processed
  19221301
July 18, 2012 4:57 PM
Thanks guys. I really appreciate all the responses. I know I need to cut way down on the processed foods. They just make it so easy! hahaha. Blood pressure and heart issues run in my family so I will definitely cut down the sodium now that I realize how much I am eating. Thanks again!!
  145858
July 8, 2014 2:38 PM
Great post - thank you!
July 13, 2014 7:58 AM
Someone told me to read the label and look for 5% or less of sodium if possible.
So when i see 5 mg or less of sodium i buy it without any guilt!
My first week my sodium was more than 3500 this week only 1200 over.
It's a learning process..
Same with the carb and fiber.....
I learn so much about food since i'm on fitness pal.
  68722123
September 7, 2014 6:47 AM
yes I strongly agree with this. after eating fresh fruits and raw vegetables I droppe 2.5 lbs in just a week. Eating healthy is the key to fat loss.

Message Boards » Food and Nutrition

Posts by members, moderators and admins should not be considered medical advice and no guarantee is made against accuracy.