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How to Reduce Salt in your Diet

By Sara Butler

Sodium is something your body needs to stay balanced each and every day. It helps to maintain mineral and water balances in that they contribute to healthy blood volume, but too much of the stuff can be a negative thing for your health. Getting too much salt isn’t difficult – it seems to be lurking everywhere. Here are a few ways you can cut down on your daily salt consumption.

Why Too Much Salt is Bad

There are several negative effects to your health that too much salt can bring. You shouldn’t eat more than 2,300 milligrams of salt per day, which is only about a teaspoon. But people get a lot more than that. Salt is found in processed foods, which is the source of the sodium most people get per day.

Too much salt puts you at risk for high blood pressure, a condition that contributes to stroke and heart disease. That’s why making sure you don’t eat too much is so important.

Tips to Cut Sodium

There are several simple strategies you can use to cut your daily intake of sodium. You can:

  • Use herbs and spices – Instead of reaching for the salt shaker, you should add herbs and spices such as garlic, basil, thyme, sesame, pepper, and oregano. Cut the amount of salt a recipe calls for in half and then taste it before you add more.
  • Avoid processed foods – Processed foods have a lot of added salt, so cutting them out cuts down on your salt intake too.
  • Avoid diet foods – Foods that are low-calories and low-fat tend to have a lot of sodium added. Make sure to check the nutrition label so you know what you’re getting.
  • Go frozen or fresh – When it comes to vegetables, choose fresh or frozen over canned. Canned veggies tend to have a lot of added salt.
  • Avoid fast food – Just as processed foods, fast foods are normally very high in added salt. Look at restaurant websites before eating there to check out the nutritional information and see if you can keep your salt intake in check when eating there.

Salt is everywhere and while you certainly need it as a part of a healthy diet, there’s a delicate balance that must be maintained to keep it in the healthy zone. Sodium adds up quick, so just being aware of where it may be hiding in your diet is a great first step to cutting down how much eat per day.

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

 

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