What Are the Major Functions of Sodium Ion

What Are the Major Functions of Sodium Ion?

• Membrane potential. Sodium ions and potassium ions help maintain the proper membrane potential in every cell in the body. The membrane potential of the cellular membrane controls the traffic of substances into or out of a cell as well as the transmission of nerve messages from the brain to various parts of the body, such as the heart and muscles.

• Blood pressure. Sodium ions participate in regulating blood volume and blood pressure. A high blood sodium concentration triggers the outflow of intracellular water into the bloodstream and dilutes the blood sodium concentration. On the other hand, the outflow of intracellular water into the bloodstream results in a shortage of water intracellularly and the feeling of thirst. That is why consumption of salty foods will make you feel thirsty. In addition, the outflow of intracellular water into the bloodstream due to a high blood sodium concentration increases the volume of the bloodstream, which exerts extra pressure against the arterial wall and hastens hypertension. Habitual consumption of salty foods can therefore elevate the risk of hypertension.

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