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Chloride sources, health benefits and uses

Thursday, September 28, 2017 by

Chloride is one of the main essential minerals in the blood along with potassium, sodium, and calcium. It helps keep the fluid amount in balance, inside and outside of cells. It is also known to maintain proper blood pressure, blood volume, and is involved in the maintenance of the pH of body fluids.

Chloride is mostly found in cells, particularly in the red blood cells, and makes up 0.15 percent of the body.

This mineral is known to be a mineral electrolyte that works with sodium and water to help in the proper distribution of fluids in the body. It can be absorbed easily by the small intestines and can be eliminated from the body through the kidneys. In some instances, kidneys retain chloride as part of the regulation of the acid-base balance in the body. In addition, it is also released in perspiration along with sodium.

The primary source of chloride is salt, whether sea salt or table salt. Moreover, it can also be found in foods such as kelp, dulse, rye, olives, tomatoes, lettuce, celery, and others.

Deficiency of this mineral can cause symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, and sweating. It can also cause metabolic alkalosis, wherein the body fluids become too alkaline, urinary potassium loss, and low fluid volume.

Medicinal uses for chloride

A balance in the levels of chloride in the body is important as having too low or too high of this mineral can be bad for our health. One of which is hyperchloremia, a condition in which the body has abnormally high blood chloride. Elevations in chloride may be seen in diarrhea, certain kidney diseases, and sometimes in overactivity of the parathyroid glands. Another condition is hypochlomeria, a condition in which the body has abnormally low blood chloride. Excessive loss of chloride can occur from heavy sweating, vomiting, and adrenal gland disease.

Body systems supported by chloride

A lot of people do not realize that although chloride has some negative effects in the body, the body still needs it.

Low blood pressure and a general feeling of weakness are two symptoms of a chloride deficiency. The body usually experiences a simultaneous loss of potassium through the urine when chloride levels drop.

Alkalosis, a dangerous condition that can develop if acid levels in the body drop too low. It causes the blood pH to become elevated.

Hypokalemic metabolic alkalosis can be developed if the body does not get enough chloride and potassium. It causes the affected person to lose the ability to control muscle function, which then causes problems with breathing and swallowing, and may even lead to death.

Many athletes take supplements of salt because drinking more water that is lost in sweat can dilute the salt within the body.

Where to learn more


Chloride, one of the main essential minerals in the body, is a type of electrolyte that works together with sodium and potassium. It helps in maintaining the body’s pH level neutral and helps in bringing the acid/alkaline level in balance.

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