Salty food doesn’t cause thirst: Study

London: Contradicting the popular assumption of salt causing thirst, it has been found that eating salty food does not necessarily make us drink more water, says a study.

“Based on the notion that the consumption of salt increases thirst, the concern has arisen that it also leads to an increased consumption of sugary drinks. However, our study found little support for the assumption that salt invariably increases drinking,” said Micah Leshem from the University of Haifa.

Leshem added that as we all consume beverages with high caloric content — alcoholic or sugary drinks — there is evidence that increased consumption of salty foods leads to an overall increase in the consumption of calories that contribute to obesity.

In the study involving 58 participants, Leshem investigated the effect of salt in solid foods on drinking. Participants were asked to taste different types of nuts — sugary candied nuts, salted nuts and nuts with no additives.

The researchers found that the level of reported thirst and the actual quantity of water that the subjects drank after eating salty nuts were not different than following consumption of candied nuts or nuts without added flavours.