YOU ALWAYS HEAR cutting down on salt is a smart move. But do you know exactly why?

Here are three science-backed reasons lowering your sodium intake is a solid health choice.

1. Get more sleep

After slashing their salt intake just a bit—from 1,070mg (about 2 teaspoons) to 800mg/day—200 subjects found they were waking less to make a bathroom trip and resting more during the night, according to a study from Nagasaki University.

2. Save your liver

Too much salt can damage your liver, but processed foods labeled “low salt” or “reduced salt” often have a worse nutritional profile than their saltier cousins, per UNC Chapel Hill research. Moral: Don’t eat processed foods.

3. Tame your blood pressure

To maintain normal blood pressure, healthy adults shouldn’t exceed 2,400mg of salt a day—but the body needs some sodium to control blood pressure, so don’t go below 500mg, according to the American Heart Association.