St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Church - Naperville, IL

Eating Right with Less Salt

Salt being poured out of a salt shaker

From the Office of the Parish Nurse:

Most Americans are getting too much sodium from the foods they eat. And, the sodium in salt plays a role in high blood pressure. (Salt is the common name for sodium chloride.)

The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines from Americans recommends that adults with hypertension are encouraged to reduce their intake of sodium to 1,500 mg per day, since that can help to reduce blood pressure.

Focus on fresh foods — Many foods in their original form, such as fruits, vegetables, fresh meats, poultry, fish, dry beans, eggs, milk, yogurt and grains like rice are naturally low in sodium. Include these foods more often in meals and snacks.

Cook more often at home — Enjoy home-prepared foods where you are in control of how much salt is added. When using canned vegetables with salt added, be sure to drain and rinse the vegetables to reduce the amount of salt.

Try new flavors — Skip the salt and try salt-free seasonings such as herbs, spices, garlic, vinegar, black pepper or lemon juice.

Read food labels — Read the nutrition facts label and the ingredients list to find packaged and canned foods lower in sodium. Look for foods labeled “low sodium,” “reduced sodium” or “no salt added.”

Allow your taste buds to adjust — like any change, it can take time for your taste buds to adapt to less salt. Foods lower in sodium may taste differently at first, but over time it’s possible to acquire a taste for foods with less salt.

(Source: Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics)