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HEALTH NOTES: This’ll shake you… too LITTLE salt can be bad for us

Health chiefs constantly tell us to slash our salt intake, but new research suggests that having too little also carries health risks.

Doctors at the Royal Free Hospital in London found that too little salt in the body, over a long period of time, weakens the immune system, increasing the risk of infections.

Patients with Gitelman syndrome and Bartter syndrome, which cause an excessive loss of salt through the kidneys, were more likely than others to suffer from recurrent fungal and urinary infections. 

The authors of the study, published in the medical journal Nature Communications, explain that a lack of salt halts the production of a type of white blood cell called interleukin 17, which detects and destroys infections.

Health chiefs constantly tell us to slash our salt intake, but new research suggests that having too little also carries health risks. Pictured: Stock image

Health chiefs constantly tell us to slash our salt intake, but new research suggests that having too little also carries health risks. Pictured: Stock image

Health chiefs constantly tell us to slash our salt intake, but new research suggests that having too little also carries health risks. Pictured: Stock image

Holding hands soon after a row could help couples bring a swift end to any disagreement, research suggests.

Partners who held hands and gazed at one another for three minutes after a heated discussion became less stressed, and saw their heart rates return to normal more quickly, the study found. 

One theory is that touching hands raises levels of oxytocin, the so-called cuddle hormone, which is linked to happy feelings. 

The researchers, from the University of Amsterdam, suggest the technique could prove useful in couples therapy.

Leukaemia warnings we ignore 

Half of British adults wouldn’t seek help for telltale signs of blood cancer, according to a survey.

Research by charity Leukaemia Care found that half of participants surveyed would not visit the GP with unusual bruising or bleeding – the most common signs of leukaemia.

The survey of 2,000 people also found three-quarters wouldn’t seek help for other symptoms, such as fevers or night sweats, and two in five wouldn’t speak to a doctor about feeling weak and breathless.

Zack Pemberton-Whiteley, patient advocacy director at Leukaemia Care, said: ‘If anybody is experiencing one or more of these symptoms, it’s always worth contacting a GP and requesting a blood test.’

Source: Daily Mail

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