Sodium

Salting Veggies

SODIUM is not all bad. It plays an essential role in keeping fluids and electrolytes in balance.

This key nutrient is only needed in small amounts but keeps muscles and nerve signals running smoothly.

Too little sodium can be harmful to the body by causing an electrolyte imbalance resulting in dehydration, muscle cramps, and dizziness. This is most often caused by excessive sweating without replenishing sodium along with water.

The Daily Recommended Intake of Sodium is UNDER 2300mg per day. Most people who follow a "Standard American Diet" consume about 3400 mg per day, almost 50% more than the upper limit!

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HOWEVER:

🥐 Some commercially produced foods that consumers often eat several times a day (such as breads, cereals, pastries) can add up to a lot of sodium over the course of a day, even if they do not taste salty.

          of the sodium consumed by the average person is from salt ADDED to processed and manufactured foods.

75%

🧂           comes from consumers adding it during cooking or at the table.

           of the sodium consumed by the average person comes from foods in their natural forms.

10%

15%

Potato Chips
Cold Meats
Loaves of Breads

Common sources of Sodium to watch:

  • Bread made with yeast

  • Pizza

  • Cold cuts and cured meats

  • Soups and Broth/Stock

  • Burritos and tacos

  • Salted snacks

  • Chicken, Turkey and Ham (Often processed with a salt solution and packaged with retained salt)

Simple Ways to Reduce Sodium Intake

  • Read Labels! Check for the sodium content of your breads, one serving (typically ONE slice) should have less than 10% of your RDI .

  • Enjoy pizza, burgers and other take out foods sparingly. Foods prepared in restaurants are usually prepared with more salt than you'd use at home. 

  • Limit cold cuts and cured meats to just a couple times per week, or opt for low sodium versions.

  • Purchase soups and broth/stock that is clearly marked LOW SODIUM. 

  • Reduce consumption of salty snacks to a couple times per week, or check your labels and opt for the lowest sodium version you can find.  

  • Opt for organic chicken and turkey. They are less likely to be brined before packaging (but still read your labels).

  • If organic isn't in budget, try soaking fresh chicken or turkey breasts in water for 30 minutes. It will reduce the amount of sodium in the meat. Buttermilk is another option, which will actually leech the salt from the meat, and the acid will tenderize at the same time. 

Supplements for Basic Nutritional Support

The statements in these articles are based on research and personal knowledge, but in NO WAY constitute medical advice. Please consult with a physician to discuss how any supplements will interact with any prescribed mediation.