What You Should Know About Low Sodium Foods
By Sara Butler
You know by now that eating too much salt is bad for your health. Eating too much salt can cause your blood pressure to rise and that’s not always easy to detect. In fact, you could have high blood pressure and not even realize it. According to the Indiana University School of Medicine, one-third of Americans suffer from high blood pressure – and that number only goes up as people age. Here are some ideas to help you lower your salt intake and keep your blood pressure under control.
How Much Salt?
Salt is also called sodium. Experts recommend that you have no more than 2,300 milligrams of sodium per day. That’s equal to about a teaspoon of table salt, so it’s not as much as it may sound. You should try to choose foods that have no salt added or are advertised as reduced sodium. On a nutrition label, a food that has less than five percent of your recommended daily allowance of salt is a winner.
Great Low Salt Choices
The key to reducing salt in your diet is to reduce the amount of processed and pre-packaged foods you eat each day. Those foods are almost guaranteed to bust your sodium intake per day since the salt content is usually pretty high.
You can fill up on these foods without shattering your sodium intake for the day:
- Vegetables – Fresh or frozen vegetables are low in sodium naturally so feel free to go wild and eat as many vegetables as your (now) healthy heart desires. Canned vegetables are usually higher in salt, so be wary of those. And salad dressings are usually pretty high in salt, too. If you’re having a salad, try balsamic vinegar instead of regular salad dressings.
- Potatoes – Baked potatoes (and sweet potatoes!) are low in sodium but high in potassium! Potassium helps your body to handle the sodium you do eat, so it’s a good thing. Jazz up potatoes without salt by using salsa on a baked potato or cinnamon on a sweet spud.
- Fruit – Fruits are often referred to as nature’s candy due to their natural sweetness. They’re also low in sodium. Bananas, apples, pears, papayas, and apricots are great choices that also give you a dose of other heart-healthy vitamins and minerals, as well as fiber, to keep you fuller for longer.
You have to really pay attention to how much sodium you’re eating per day because too much can have some serious consequences for your health.
To learn more about your health and wellness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Orlando, Fla.