Salt is not just in your salt shaker. About 70% of the sodium we consume comes from processed food and meals at restaurants.
Excess sodium consumption can lead to high blood pressure, which increases the risk of heart disease and stroke. Most Americans consume an average of 3,440 mg of sodium per day – far greater than the recommended limit of 2,300mg. The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend that a person should eat no more than:
- 2,300 mg of sodium (1 teaspoon) per day. Nearly everyone benefits from lower sodium intake.
How Can I Eat My Best?
- Eat less fast food and restaurant meals
- Eat more fruits and vegetables
- Eat fewer canned and pre-packaged foods. Examples of what to limit: sausage, bologna, ham, canned soups, pickles, olives, frozen meals, pizza, packaged mixes, and salad dressings
- Eat fewer salty snacks, including chips and salty crackers
- Remove the salt shaker from the dining table
- Rinse canned foods to remove some salt
- Use spices instead of salt, such as garlic or onion powder, lemon juice, and dried herbs
- Buy fresh poultry, fish, and lean meat rather than canned or processed