Terre Pruitt's Blog

In the realm of health, wellness, fitness, and the like, or whatever inspires me.

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Posts Tagged ‘sodium intake’

Lower Salt Intake

Posted by terrepruitt on September 2, 2010

The recommended daily maximum sodium intake for Americans is 2300 to 2400 milligrams for healthy people, for people with high blood pressure and elderly people it is even less at 1500 milligrams.  Do you know how much the average American consumes per day?   A lot, more than twice the amount for a healthy person, at 5000 milligrams.  The body  needs 500 milligrams a day and we are getting about 10 times as much.

One teaspoon of salt contains 2325 milligrams of sodium.  So one teaspoon is about all we should be having per day.  It would be a lot easier if we were in complete control of the sodium we consumed and it was not added to our food.  A lot of food might not even taste salty to contain a high amount of sodium.  Most of the salt in the American diet comes from restaurant foods and processed, about 80 percent.  Foods high in sodium are the highly processed foods, canned foods, pickled foods, condiments, dressings, and sauces.

There is research predicting that more than 100,000 Ameican deaths a year could be prevented if Americans reduced their sodium intake.

It could be a matter of understanding the labeling terms, according to an article on the Mayo Clinic’s website, here is some help:

  • Sodium-free or salt-free. Each serving in this product contains less than 5 mg of sodium.
  • Very low sodium. Each serving contains 35 mg of sodium or less.
  • Low sodium. Each serving contains 140 mg of sodium or less.
  • Reduced or less sodium. The product contains at least 25 percent less sodium than the regular version.
  • Lite or light in sodium. The sodium content has been reduced by at least 50 percent from the regular version.
  • Unsalted or no salt added. No salt is added during processing of a food that normally contains salt. However, some foods with these labels may still be high in sodium.

I really love salt.  Even though I don’t eat a lot of processed foods, I do salt my food.  I am probably one of the “average Americans” that consumes sodium on the high end.  The information that I am seeing states that liking foods salty is an acquired taste so one can learn to like food less salty by just reducing the salt slowly.  I think I am going to do that.    What about you, do you eat the “average American” amount?  Is there a way you can reduce your sodium intake?

 

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