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Letter: YourSay - Don't forget salt intake.

Byline: Dr Madeleine Sharp

IN all the official advice as to precautions we should take during excessively hot weather, I have been surprised that there has been no mention of the importance of salt which is almost as important as fluids.

Our in-built heat regulating mechanism depends on sweating which, in turn, depends on the body's having sufficient salt.

If we sweat a lot, as we do in hot weather, we lose a lot of salt and if we do not replace this we will eventually stop sweating and will succumb to heat stoke, when our body temperature will climb to that of the environment.

Prior to this comes heat exhaustion with unpleasant symptoms such as muscle cramps.

During the Second World War, I served in India as a nursing officer in Queen Alexandra's Imperial Military Nursing Service and was at first surprised to be advised to take a tablespoonful of salt daily during the summer months, but realised the importance of the advice when I found how my uniform dress was glistening with salt after a period on duty.

Dr Madeleine Sharp, Baginton Road, Coventry.
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Title Annotation:Letters
Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Date:Aug 10, 2006
Words:186
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