Salt makes your body hold on to water. If you eat too much salt, the extra water stored in your body raises your blood pressure. … The higher your blood pressure, the greater the strain on your heart, arteries, kidneys and brain. This can lead to heart attacks, strokes, dementia and kidney disease.
How much sodium do I need?
Most people eat too much sodium, often without knowing it. The average American eats about 3,400 mg of sodium a day. • The American Heart Association recommends no more than 2,300 milligrams (mgs) a day and an ideal limit of no more than 1,500 mg per day for most adults. • Your doctor may tell you to cut salt out completely
What foods should I limit?
The best way to reduce sodium is to avoid prepackaged, processed and prepared foods, which tend to be high in sodium. Watch out for the “Salty 6” — the top six common foods that add the most salt to your diet. Read food labels and chose the lowest level of sodium you can find for these items: • Breads and rolls • Cold cuts and cured meats • Pizza • Poultry • Soup • Sandwiches These are some other foods can also be sources of “hidden” sodium: • Cheeses and buttermilk • Salted snacks, nuts and seeds • Frozen dinners and snack foods • Condiments (ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise) • Pickles and olives • Seasoned salts, such as onion, garlic and celery salts • Sauces, such as barbeque, soy, steak, and Worcestershire How can I cook with less salt and more flavor? • Avoid adding table salt to foods. • Use herbs and spices to add flavor to foods. • Eat fresh fruits, vegetables, lean meats, skinless poultry, fish, and tuna canned in water. • Choose unsalted nuts and low-sodium canned foods. Cook dried peas and beans. • Use products made without added salt; try low-sodium bouillon and soups and unsalted broth. • Rinse canned vegetables, beans and shellfish to reduce salt. • Sprinkle vinegar or citrus juice on foods just before eating. Vinegar is great on vegetables like spinach.
What about eating out?
Don’t be afraid to order your food as you would prepare it at home!! Controlling your sodium intake doesn’t mean spoiling the pleasure of eating out. But order carefully. Consider these tips for meals away from home: • Select fresh greens and fruits when available. Ask for oil and vinegar to top your salad or dressing on the side. • Be specific about what you want and how you want your food prepared. Request that your dish be prepared without added salt. • Remember portion control. You can always bring home
What other seasonings can I try?
Many of our patients find that Mrs. Dash and Braggs products are a great salt alternative but still give patients the flavor that they crave! Low-sodium pink Himalayan sea salt helps to replace the high sodium content in everyday table salt. Getting your daily recommended intake of water helps tremendously to fight the salt and sugar battle. If you’re craving salt, give it a few days and it will resolve… And reach out to your Lifetime Metabolic Doctor or FLA for more tips to get through the process. Let’s take back control of our health!