Chloride In The Diet

Chloride In The Diet

Definition

Chloride is a mineral. Chloride, along with sodium and potassium, are known as the electrolyte minerals. Electrolytes are in all body fluids and help regulate the balance of fluids in the body's cells. Chloride, along with sodium, is found concentrated in the fluid outside of cells.

What food source is the nutrient found in?

Table salt and salty foods, such as olives, are the most concentrated sources of chloride. Table salt is known chemically as sodium chloride. Chloride is also found in moderate amounts in these foods:
  • meats
  • chicken
  • fish
  • grains
  • fruits
  • vegetables, especially tomatoes
  • nuts
  • milk products
  • seeds

How does the nutrient affect the body?

Chloride works closely with the other electrolyte minerals, sodium and potassium, to provide certain functions in the body.
  • They help maintain the body's acid-base balance.
  • They are crucial in keeping the body's fluids in balance.
  • They also help transmit nerve impulses or signals.
  • Chloride is key in keeping the stomach's digestive fluids working as they should. This helps to break down food and with the absorption of nutrients.

Information

It is rare for someone to have a lack of chloride in the diet because salt is such a common part most people's diet, especially in the US. Chloride is found in foods that have natural sources of salt. Processed foods are also often high in salt. There is no Recommended Daily Allowance, called RDA, for chloride. Most healthy people can fulfill their chloride needs with a minimum of 750 mg per day. Excessive sweating, vomiting, or diarrhea can cause the body to lose chloride.

Sources

Mahan, K, MS, RD, CDE&Escott-Stump, S., MA, RD, LDN. (2000). Krause's Food, Nutrition,&Diet Therapy (10th ed.). Pennsylvania: W.B. Saunders Company.

Somer, E., MA, RD.&Health Media of America. (1995). The Essential Guide To Vitamins and Minerals (2nd ed.). New York: HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.

Duyff, R., MS, RD, CFCS. (1996). The American Dietetic Association's Complete Food&Nutrition Guide. Minnesota: Chronimed Publishing.

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