Slash Sodium in 6 Steps
Salt can be found in some unexpected places. An average restaurant-prepared sub can have twice the sodium of one you prepare at home with low-sodium meats and cheeses.
Being aware of where sodium lurks and taking steps to avoid it is important for protecting your heart.
Below are some simple steps from New Hanover Regional Medical Center nutritionists for slashing sodium from your diet.
Have at least three servings of low fat dairy a day
Low fat dairy contains less sodium than full fat versions of dairy. Choose low and reduced fat cheeses, milks and yogurts.
Read food labels
Be aware of the amount of sodium in the foods you are eating. Aim to consume less than 2,000mg of sodium per day. If the sodium content of a product is 20% or more, ditch it!
Choose fresh fruits and vegetables more often than processed and fast foods
Any food you eat from the fridge will always have less sodium than eating out at restaurants and fast food places.
Ditch packaged soups and microwavable meals
These highly processed foods are loaded with sodium, often containing the maximum intake for the day.
Use spices to season food instead of salt
Choose fresh herbs and spices. Garlic and onion powder are great substitutes for garlic salt and onion salt. Read ingredient labels when buying dried spices to make sure they contain no added salt.
Take the salt shaker off the table
This may prevent you from adding additional salt to meals. Taste your food before adding salt, you may not even need it.