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An Antidote for Very Salty Food?

You know how there are certain foods that can help you from the effects of really hot chiles? (An Indian friend says cabbage is the best antidote.) Well, I had a very salty meal today, and I have been chugging water all day, but it just hasn't worked to nullify the dry mouth/cotton mouth feeling I've had all day. (I am also on a medication that contributes to this cotton mouth.) Is there a liquid or food that is known to be helpful with this? thx much.

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    1. I don't think so. I drink a lot of water in general and find that when I eat something with hidden salt, I puff up right away. Something diuretic, to help you shed the water that is carrying the salt, might help. Coffee or alcohol might be the way to go, but that's just a guess. Some diuretic foods are lemon, melon, celery, onion, and cucumber, but there are more. Whether or not they help a dry mouth, I don't know.

      1. I think you are going to have to let your cells deal with the sodium overload. Depending on your health this may take a few days.
        Drinking water will help but too much can cause your cells just as much trouble.
        Think 'homeostasis'. Be good to your cells.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Puffin3

          Yes, it can take days after just one salty meal.

        2. The better question is why you ate a very salty meal.

          1 Reply
          1. re: ferret

            Curious is to why is that better question? Sometime you don't realize how much salt is in something until you feel the effects. Other time you just can't resist. Corn beef and cabbage I am looking at you!

          2. I find adding fresh squeezed lemon to my water helps the dry mouth feeling. Also green tea helps me flush out excess sodium.

            Lastly my dad took meds that gave him dry mouth. There is an over the counter mouthwash that can help. I don't remember the name but maybe ask the pharmacist.

            6 Replies
            1. re: foodieX2

              want to thank you and the others for some very helpful replies. What's so strange for me-was that the meal in question (on top of the meds) contained no soy sauce or msg. It took about 2 days to get over that uber thirst, and i did try lemon juice and cukes- which seemed to help.Now, before i try that mouthwash (i hate mouthwash) i'm going back to my regular black iced tea, with which i use lemon, to see if that has a thirst lessening affect that i didn't realize before (I switch types of tea every few months.) Thx much again.

              1. re: opinionatedchef

                Soy sauce and msg are not the only sources of salt.

                1. re: fldhkybnva

                  yes, f, i am well aware of that because i look at sodium counts for everything nowadays. But i think of soy sauce, fish sauce, anchovies and msg being the heavy hitters in the salt realm.

                  1. re: opinionatedchef

                    Even regular soy sauce has anywhere between 800 - 1200mg of sodium per TBSP of 15g !!

                    I only buy the Kikkoman Lite, which is about half that for sodium.

                    1. re: opinionatedchef

                      True, though it's amazing the sodium they can cram into foods without those items :)

                    2. re: fldhkybnva

                      My worst saltbomb experience this year followed sharing some Turkish pide and an Ethiopian platter with 2 Chowhounds. I'm guessing we each ate around 1100-1400 calories that evening, but I'm guessing we got triple our daily recommended amount of salt. The boots I'd bought earlier that afternoon didn't fit the following morning, so I returned to the store, thinking I bought the boots a half size too short, to discover the new pair was almost a full size too large 2 days later, after the salt was gone.

                      Ethiopian Veg Platter
                      Turkish Pide

                2. I was on a med that caused dry mouth a while back and found that Biotene helped. It is a mouthwash specifically for dry mouth symptoms. To keep it food related, for an irritated throat I drink hot water with a little lemon and a good amount of honey. Maybe try that?

                    1. re: Tripeler

                      Surprisingly, yes. With me, it is often not salt but dehydration. And guzzling water, having it sloshing around inside, doesn't help much. I can feel an electrolyte imbalance. But then, a single beer.....aaaahhh!

                    2. Have a banana or two and drink lots of water. I have the same issue, you don't realize how salty some restaurant meals are until after the meal.

                      8 Replies
                      1. re: Pookipichu

                        Yes, a banana or two. I believe potassium helps to neutralize sodium.

                        1. re: SilverMoth

                          Very true though many other foods have a lot more potassium that I've found helpful to counterbalance sodium - tomatoes, mushrooms, beans, avocado, potatoes are all really great sources

                          1. re: fldhkybnva

                            odd, a fresh picked farm fresh ripened on the vine tomato, eaten plain, often tastes of natural saltiness to me

                            1. re: fldhkybnva

                              The great thing about bananas is that they're cheap, readily available, easy to eat and you don't need to cook them.

                                1. re: Pookipichu

                                  And gentle on the stomach. It's one of nature's most complete self-contained foods.

                              1. Keep drinking, it takes a while.

                                  1. re: Bellachefa

                                    Midol made me hallucinate back in the '80s when it took it.

                                    Could help you forget the bloat.

                                  2. I hope that by now, OP no longer thirsty from that meal.

                                    When I get that excessive thirst that lasts long after a restaurant meal, I am almost certain that it had a lot of MSG in it. Not just salt or a small amount of MSG as in a bag of chips or instant ramen.

                                    What I find that helps somewhat is drinking a lot of celery/parsley/cucumber juice.

                                    1. If you have healthy liver, kidneys, and heart, your body will eliminate the excess sodium naturally. The natural thirst that follows excessive salt intake is the body's way of correcting the problem. If you suffer from liver, heart and/or kidney disease, you should avoid excessive salt intake to begin with, but see your doctor if you become swollen ( a weight gain of two or more pounds in one day that persists) or become short of breath at rest or minimal exertion. You may require a diuretic pill and/or other medication.

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: Doctormhl1

                                        This is true but I think the important point is that the thirst can last a while even after one high sodium meal.

                                      2. A high potassium snack or beverage will help your body to rebalance- certain brands of coconut water are high in potassium (check the label), kiwi is actually much higher in potassium than bananas but whatever is handy. Dried apricots and plain yogurt are also good sources.

                                        I find that ice cold water with cucumber and lemon is easy to drink, and just drinking a large volume of water until your body recycles all the excess sodium may be the only real cure.

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: Ttrockwood

                                          thats interesting about kiwis being higher in potassium then bananas!

                                          I not a coconut water freak. Im just amazed at what a calming effect it seems to have on my digestive system. It feels like it calms and soothes things down if I eat to salty or spicy food.

                                          I had McDonalds fries which I have once every few years about a month back. They actually picked my lips they were so salty.

                                          1. I find tabbouleh (no salt), tomatoes, cucumbers (no salt), watermelon (or other melons), tea, agua frescas and cucumber/berry-infused waters help after too much salt. Cabbage soup and low-salt borscht seem to help. Exercise also helps. I find it takes me up to 48 hours to drop the bloat after a saltbomb meal.

                                            1. I had an East Indian meal last weekend that left me feeling like I'm crawling for water in a desert. The damn daals, chana masala, aloo gobi and palak paneer can be very salty.

                                              I also bloat easily, esp. with MSG-rich restaurant foods.

                                              I find milk (skim or 1%) comforting after a salt-laden meal. Bananas help too. Also green tea or mint tea.

                                              I can gain 2-3 lbs from bloating alone and my jeans or some shirts start feeling tighter.

                                              1. I find that if I ~know~ I'll be visiting one of these salt-bomb (not just Indian, but Chinese, Korean etc. ) buffets I can pre-hydrate.

                                                8-16 oz of H2O the night before.

                                                8-16 OZ H2O the morning "of", especially if you drink caffinated tea or coffee with breakfast.

                                                Drink the tea/water offered with the meal.

                                                Drink another 8-16 oz.in the afternoon. I usually do a mix of carbonated water and herbal tea.

                                                Finally, EXERCISE. Getting out for a ride or a walk or run will help move things along and eradicate that "bloated" feeling.