Chloride is a mineral which is particularly found in table salt. Along with sodium and potassium, it is necessary for a good fluid balance of the body. In addition, chloride also stimulates the development of gastric acid and is present in here itself, in the form of hydrochloric acid.
Table salt, which contains sodium and chloride, is the major source of chloride. So chloride is, just like sodium, found in almost all industrially prepared products, ranging from soup to sauce and from chips to cookies. Bread and meats contain chloride too.
- Needed for a proper fluid balance.
- Good for a normal stomach function. Chloride plays a role in digestion in the stomach, because it is necessary for the production of gastric acid.
A shortage of chloride in the Western world will not easily occur, because chloride is present in virtually all foods. Therefore, even people who follow a low-salt diet still get enough chloride. Moreover, the kidneys ensure that a person doesn’t lose too much chloride.
Due to excessive use of table salt, the body can retain fluid (edema), which may cause high blood pressure. However, symptoms of excess chloride are unknown.
An overdose can occur in case of dehydration, when taking certain medications, a high intake of table salt or potassium salt or a reduced urine production in some forms of cancer, gastritis or renal disease.