Limiting Salt Intake

We hear a lot about watching the amount of sodium in our foods.  Did you know that the recommended amount of sodium for a healthy person is about a teaspoon of salt, or 2300 mg, a day.  We usually eat much more than that!

Do you know what foods have higher amounts of sodium?  There are 6 popular foods that we eat that have lots of sodium, even though they don't really taste salty.  Let's take a look at what these foods are and find some ways to cut down on the sodium that we eat each day.

  1. Breads and Rolls -- Breads and rolls can contain 100-200 of sodium per piece.  This can really add up when making a sandwich.  Look for whole grain bread with 200mg of sodium or less per serving.  Use whole grain pita pockets or whole grain English muffins for a twist to your regular sandwich!
  2. Cold cuts and cured meats -- Sandwich meats are usually packed with sodium.  Just two ounces of deli meat can have half of our daily recommended sodium intake.  Look for low-sodium meats or make sandwiches with hummus, egg whites, veggies or low sodium tuna instead.  Try a Crunchy Vegetable Wrap for a healthy alternative to the normal sandwich. 
  3. Pizza -- Pizza is a household favorite that everyone loves.  Many of the ingredients that go on a pizza can really add lots of sodium.  Choose a low sodium crust and change up the pizza by adding olive oil instead of tomato sauce, limit the amount of cheese added, and load up on veggies!  Make MyPlate Pita Pizzas at home with the kids and let them add their favorite veggies to make it their own. 
  4. Poultry -- Poultry (chicken and turkey) can sometimes have broth or a sodium solution added that increases the amount of sodium in each serving.  Read the label and only choose chicken that has no added ingredients or seasonings.
  5. Soup -- Many canned soups have one days' worth of sodium in a single serving!  Look for low-sodium canned soups or make your own homemade soup.  Make a homemade Chicken Noodle Soup recipe at home for the family.
  6. Sandwiches -- Burgers and sandwiches may contain a lot of sodium, especially from a restaurant.  Try asking that the sandwich be grilled and plain (without cheese and other condiments).  This will help reduce the amount of sodium.   Instead of the whole sandwich, order a half sandwich and then add a side salad or fruit to your meal.
For additional ways to reduce the amount of sodium in your meals, visit our previous blog post, Salt = Sodium.  

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© Eat Smart, Be Fit Maryland!Maira Gall