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Where do we get our dietay salt (sodium)?

Written By northidahodpc

Where do we get our dietay salt (sodium)?

February 11, 2012

The news out of the CDC this past week was quite a shock to me.  I’ve always told patients to limit the salt in their diet by tossing the salt shaker and eliminating snacks like chips and pretzels as well as cutting out canned foods such as soups.  However, these two food groups are lower down the list of the top ten foods Americans consume containing sodium.  The recommended guidelines suggest that we ingest no more than 2,300 mg of sodium per day.  However, the average American far exceeds this amount, consuming 3,300 mg.  This sodium load increases our risk of high blood pressure, which is a contributing factor for stroke and heart attack. It also makes swelling (edema) more difficult to control.  Only 1 in 10 Americans meet the daily sodium guidelines.  Listed below are the top 10 foods that Americans eat containing sodium, which accounts for approximately 44% of the daily amount consumed:

1)bread and rolls
2)cold cuts and cured meats
3)pizza
4)fresh and processed poultry
5)soups
6)fast food hamburgers and sandwiches
7)cheese
8)spaghetti and other pasta dishes
9)meatloaf and other meat dishes
10)snacks including potato chips and pretzels

The take home message in all of this is moderation of the listed foods eaten, and increasing the consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables.  And certainly, keep the salt shaker off the table!…..Richard R Samuel, MD     Family Practice and Urgent Care   Hayden, ID  USA

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