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Easy Ways to Eat Less Salt

By Sara Butler

Many people are getting more sodium in their diets than anticipated without going anywhere near the salt shaker. According to the American Heart Association, 75 percent of the sodium people eat each day comes from restaurants or packaged foods. That makes it very difficult to control the salt you eat each day simply because it’s added to your food before you even buy or order it.

It’s a well-known fact that too much salt is bad for your health. But there are some very easy ways you can cut sodium in your diet. Here are a few easy tips to help you get started!

When Shopping

When you’re at the store picking out your food, you can reduce the amount of excess sodium you get in your diet by:

  • Choosing packaged foods carefully – Look at the nutritional information on the label and pick the product with the least amount of sodium you can find. You may be surprised at just how much sodium levels differ between brands.
  • Choosing poultry wisely – Chicken is a great source of lean protein but you must be careful to avoid chicken that has been injected with a sodium solution.
  • Looking at your condiments – Condiments are a huge source of added salt, so look at the nutrition information of the condiments you buy, opting for lower sodium versions when you can.
  • Being wary of canned vegetables – Canned vegetables are often full of salt, so make sure to choose the reduced sodium variety.

When Cooking

You can also assault high salt intake in your own kitchen! When you’re cooking, make sure to:

  • Use herbs and spices in place of salt – You can spice up a recipe with citrus juice, vinegar, garlic, onions, spices, and herbs without ever touching the salt shaker.
  • Rinse canned beans – Canned beans are great for you, but you can reduce the amount of sodium in them by as much as 40 percent by simply rinsing them after taking them out of the can.
  • Bring out the natural flavors – You don’t need salt if you cook in a way that enhances the natural flavors of food. Try braising, grilling, sautéing, searing, or roasting to reduce the need for salt.

You may need to take some time to get used to adding less salt to food you eat, but when you utilize other flavorful ingredients in your cooking, you’ll find after a while you don’t miss it at all -- and you’ll be healthier for it!

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Marietta, Ga.

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