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30 Foods Rich in Sodium and what to Eat instead

    Abdulaziz Sobh
    By Abdulaziz Sobh

    Categories: Health


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    Table salt, known chemically as sodium chloride, is composed of 40% sodium.

    It is estimated that at least half of people with hypertension have blood pressure that is affected by sodium consumption which means they are sensitive to salt. In addition, your risk of salt sensitivity increases with age.

    The Daily Reference Intake (IDR) for sodium is 2,300 mg or approximately 1 teaspoon of salt.

    Even so, the average daily sodium intake in the United States is 3,400 mg, much higher than the recommended upper limit. This comes mainly from packaged and restaurant foods, rather than using your salt shaker too much.

    Sodium is added to foods for flavor and as part of some food preservatives and additives.

    Here are 30 foods that tend to be high in sodium and what to eat instead.

    1. Shrimp
    Packaged, plain and frozen shrimp commonly contain added salt for flavor, as well as high-sodium preservatives. For example, sodium tripolyphosphate is commonly added to help minimize the loss of moisture during thawing.

    A 3-ounce serving (85 grams) of non-breaded frozen shrimp can contain as much as 800 mg of sodium, 35% of the IDR. The shrimp breaded and fried is similarly salty.

    In contrast, a 3 ounce serving (85 grams) of freshly caught shrimp without salt and additives has only 101 mg of sodium or 4% of the IDR.

    Opt for fresh fish if you can or visit a health food store for frozen shrimp without additives.

    2. soup
    Canned soups, packaged and prepared for restaurants often contain a lot of sodium, although you can find reduced sodium options for some canned varieties.

    Sodium comes mainly from salt, although some soups also contain flavor additives rich in sodium, such as monosodium glutamate (MSG).

    On average, canned soup has 700 mg of sodium, or 30% of the IDR, per 1 cup serving (245 grams).

    3. Ham
    Ham is rich in sodium because salt is used to heal and flavor meat. A 3-ounce serving (85 grams) of toasted ham has an average of 1,117 mg of sodium, or 48% of the IDR.

    There are no signs that food companies reduce the amount of salt of this popular meat. In a recent national sampling of American foods, researchers found that ham was 14% higher in sodium than in the previous analysis.

    Consider using ham alone as an occasional condiment in small amounts instead of eating a full serving.

    4. Instant pudding
    The pudding does not taste salty, but there is a lot of sodium hidden in the instant pudding mix.

    This sodium is from salt and additives that contain sodium disodium phosphate and tetrasodium pyrophosphate used to help thicken the instant pudding.

    A 25 gram serving of the instant vanilla pudding mixture used to make a 1/2 cup serving has 350 mg of sodium or 15% of the IDR. In contrast, the same amount of regular vanilla pudding mix contains only 135 mg of sodium or 6% of the IDR.


    5. cottage cheese
    Cottage cheese is a good source of calcium and an excellent source of protein, but it is also relatively high in salt. A 1/2-cup (113-gram) portion of cottage cheese averages 350 mg of sodium or 15% of the RDI.

    The salt in the cottage cheese not only improves the flavor but also contributes to the texture and functions as a preservative. Therefore, you will generally not find low sodium versions.

    However, one study found that rinsing cottage cheese with tap water for three minutes and then draining it reduced the sodium content by 63%.

    6. Vegetable juice
    Drinking vegetable juice is a simple way to get your vegetables, but if you do not read the nutrition labels, you could also be drinking a lot of sodium.

    A serving of 8 oz. (240 ml) vegetable juice may contain 405 mg of sodium or 17% of the IDR.

    Fortunately, some brands offer low sodium versions, which means they can not have more than 140 mg of sodium per serving according to FDA regulations.

    7. Dressing for salads
    Some of the sodium in salad dressing comes from salt. In addition, some brands add flavor additives that contain sodium, such as MSG and its cousins, disodium inosinate and disodium guanylate.

    In a review of the main branded foods sold in US stores UU., The salad dressing averaged 304 mg of sodium per serving of 2 tablespoons (28 grams) or 13% of the IDR.

    However, sodium ranged from 10-620 mg per serving through salad dressing samples, so if you buy carefully, you might find one low in sodium.

    An even better option is to make your own attempt using extra virgin olive oil and vinegar.

    8. Pizza
    Pizza and other multi-ingredient dishes account for almost half the sodium consumed by Americans.

    Many of the ingredients such as cheese, sauce, dough and processed meat contain significant amounts of sodium, which accumulate rapidly when combined.

    A large slice of 140 grams of frozen pizza purchased at the store averages 765 mg of sodium, or 33% of the IDR. A slice of the same size prepared for the restaurant includes, even more, an average of 957 mg of sodium, or 41% of the IDR.

    If you eat more than one slice, sodium adds up quickly. Instead, limit yourself to one slice and complete your meal with low-sodium foods, such as a green salad with low-sodium dressing.

    9. Sandwiches
    Sandwiches are another multi-ingredient dish that accounts for almost half of the sodium consumed by Americans. Bread, processed meat, cheese and condiments that are often used to make sandwiches contribute a significant amount of sodium.

    For example, a six-inch submarine sandwich made with cold cuts has an average of 1,127 mg of sodium or 49% of the IDR.

    You can significantly reduce your sodium intake by choosing raw sandwich toppings, such as grilled chicken breast with sliced avocado and tomato.

    10. Broths and broths
    Packed broths and broths used as a base for soups and stews or for seasoning meats and vegetable dishes are notoriously high in salt.

    For example, 8 ounces (240 ml) of beef broth average 782 mg of sodium or 34% of the IDR. Chicken and vegetable broths are similarly high in sodium.

    Fortunately, you can easily find broths and broths with reduced sodium content, which have at least 25% less sodium per serving than the normal versions.

    11. Potato casseroles inbox
    The plates of potatoes in a box, particularly the potatoes au gratin and other potatoes with cheese, contain a lot of salt. Some also contain monosodium glutamate sodium and preservatives.

    A 1/2-cup (27-gram) portion of baked and scalloped potato mixture that makes a 2/3-cup cooked portion have 450 mg of sodium or 19% of the RDI.

    Everyone agrees to exchange potatoes in boxes for more nutritious starches, such as a baked sweet potato or a winter squash.

    12. Pork rinds
    Crunchy pork skins (skins) have grown in popularity due to the increased interest in the low carbohydrate ketogenic diet.

    However, although pork rinds are a keto-friendly snack, they are high in sodium.

    A 1-ounce serving (28 grams) of pork rinds has 515 mg of sodium or 22% of the IDR. If you opt for barbecue flavor, one serving has 747 mg of sodium or 32% of the IDR.

    If you crave something crispy, consider nuts without salt instead

    13. Canned vegetables
    Canned vegetables are convenient but they pack their portion of sodium.

    For example, a 1/2-cup serving (124-gram) of canned peas has 310 mg of sodium or 13% of the RDI. Similarly, a 1/2 cup (122 grams) portion of canned asparagus contains 346 mg of sodium or 15% of the IDR.

    Draining and rinsing canned vegetables for a couple of minutes can reduce the sodium content by 9-23%, depending on the vegetable. Alternatively, opt for simple and frozen vegetables, which are low in sodium but convenient.

    14. Processed cheese
    Processed cheeses, including pre-sliced American cheese and processed cheese similar to bread like Velveeta, tend to consume more sodium than natural cheese.

    This is partly due to the fact that the processed cheese is made with the help of emulsifying salts, such as sodium phosphate, at high temperatures, which makes it a consistent and soft product.

    A 1-ounce serving (28 grams) of American cheese has 377 mg of sodium, or 16% of the IDR, while the same amount of cheese has 444 mg of sodium or 19% of the IDR.

    Instead, opt for natural low-sodium cheeses, such as Swiss or mozzarella.

    15. Dry meat and other dried meats
    The portability of dried meat and other dried meats makes them a convenient source of protein, but salt is widely used to preserve them and increase flavor.

    For example, a 1-ounce serving (28 grams) of dry meat packs 620 mg of sodium or 27% of the IDR.

    If you are a spasmodic fan, look for meat from grass-fed or organically grown animals, as they tend to have simpler ingredient lists and less sodium. But be sure to check the label.

    16. Tortillas
    Tortillas contain plenty of sodium, mainly salt and yeast agents, such as baking soda or baking powder.

    An 8-inch flour tortilla (55 grams) averages 391 mg of sodium or 17% of the IDR. Therefore, if you eat two soft-shell tacos, you will get a third of the sodium IDR of the tortillas only.

    If you like tortillas, opt for whole grains and consider how the sodium count fits your daily allowance.

    17. Cold cuts and salami
    Sausages are not only known as cold meats and salami contains a lot of salt, many are also made with preservatives that contain sodium and other additives.

    A 55-gram (2-ounce) serving of sausage has an average of 497 mg of sodium, or 21% of the IDR. The same amount of salami bags even more 1016 mg, or 44% of the IDR.

    Fresh sliced meat, such as roast meat or turkey are healthier options.

    18. Pretzels
    The large salt crystals on top of the pretzels are the first clue to their sodium content.

    A 1-ounce serving (28 grams) of pretzels has an average of 322 mg of sodium, or 14% of the IDR.

    You can find pretzels without salt, but still should not be your snack, since they are usually made with white flour and have a minimum nutritional value.

    19. Pickles
    A single 1-ounce dill pickle (28 grams), the type of pickle that may come along with a deli sandwich has about 241 mg of sodium or 10% of the IDR.

    Sodium in whole pickles accumulates more quickly. A medium-sized dill brine contains 561 mg of sodium or 24% of the IDR. If you are following a sodium-restricted diet, keep lots of small gherkins.

    20. Sauces
    You can season foods with sauces, either during cooking or at the table, but some of that flavor comes from salt.

    Soy sauce is one of the most sated: a 1-tablespoon serving (15 ml) packs 1,024 mg of sodium or 44% of the IDR.

    The barbecue sauce is quite salty, with 2 tablespoons (30 ml) that provide 395 mg of sodium, or 17% of the IDR.

    You can find reduced sodium versions of some sauces, including soy sauce, or make your own to keep the levels low.

    21. Hot Dogs and Bratwurst
    In a recent sample of packaged foods in the United States, a hot dog or bratwurst averaged 578 mg of sodium or 25% of the IDR.

    However, sodium varied from 230-1,330 mg in the sampling of these processed meats, which suggests that if you read the labels carefully, you may find low sodium options.

    Even so, processed meats are best kept for an occasional treatment instead of the daily meal. The World Health Organization warns that eating processed meats increases the risk of certain cancers.

    22. Tomato sauce
    You may not think about controlling the sodium in a can of natural tomato sauce or other canned tomato products, but you should.

    Only a quarter cup (62 grams) of tomato sauce has 321 mg of sodium or 14% of the IDR.

    Fortunately, canned tomato products without added salt are widely available.

    23. Bagels and other bread
    Although bread rolls, bagels, and dinners usually do not contain shocking amounts of sodium, they can add significantly to people who eat several servings per day.

    Bagels are an especially large contributor to sodium, as they tend to be large. A bagel from a grocery store contains 400 mg of sodium or 17% of the IDR.

    Choosing smaller portions of bread will help reduce sodium consumption, and opting for whole versions is healthier.

    24. Canned meats, poultry, and seafood
    Like other canned foods, canned meats are higher in sodium than their fresh counterparts, although some manufacturers can gradually reduce sodium.

    In a recent analysis, canned tuna averaged 247 mg of sodium per 3-ounce serving (85 grams), or 10% of the IDR. This represents a 27% decrease in sodium content compared to several decades ago.

    In another recent analysis, the canned chicken or turkey had 212-425 mg of sodium per 3-ounce serving (85 grams), which is 9-18% of the IDR.

    However, cured canned meats, such as canned meat and pork, were significantly more salty: 794-1393 mg of sodium per 3 oz. Serving (85 grams), or 29-51% of the IDR. Pass this for canned low-sodium options or buy fresh.

    25. Food helpers inbox
    Boxed food helpers contain pasta or other starch along with sauce and condiments. Usually, just add water and golden ground beef, or sometimes chicken or tuna, and then cook it on the stove.

    But this convenience has a high cost: there is usually around 575 mg of sodium per 1 / 4-1 / 2 cup (30-40 grams) of dry mix, or 25% of the IDR.

    A much healthier and yet quick alternative is to make your own sautéed dish with lean meat or chicken and frozen vegetables.

    26. Cookies
    This favorite breakfast contains your portion of sodium, even when it is not covered in sauce. Those made from the frozen or refrigerated dough can be especially rich in sodium, so limit the biscuits to an occasional treat.

    In a national sample in the USA, A cookie made with packaged dough averaged 528 mg of sodium or 23% of the IDR. Even so, some contained as much as 840 mg of sodium per serving, or 36% of the IDR.

    27. Macaroni and cheese
    This favorite comfort food is high in sodium, mainly due to the salty cheese sauce. However, a recent analysis suggests that manufacturers have reduced sodium in macaroni and cheese by an average of 10%.

    Current data show that a 2.5-ounce serving of the dry mix used to make a 1-cup (189-gram) serving of macaroni and cheese has an average of 475 mg of sodium, or 20% of the RDI.

    If you want to occasionally eat macaroni and cheese, consider buying a whole grain version and dilute the dish by adding some vegetables, such as broccoli or spinach.

    28. Frozen foods
    Many frozen foods are high in sodium, some contain at least half of their daily sodium allowance per dish. Check the label of each variety, since sodium can vary widely within a specific product line.

    The FDA has set a limit of 600 mg of sodium for a freezer meal

    29. Baked beans
    Unlike other canned beans, you can not rinse the baked beans with water to remove some of the salt, since you would also be washing the tasty sauce.

    A serving of ½ cup (127 grams) of baked beans in sauce packs of 524 mg of sodium, or 23% of the IDR. Homemade bean recipes may not have less sodium, but you can modify them to reduce added salt.

    30. Sausage, bacon and pork salt
    Whether in links or hamburgers, the sausage averages 415 mg of sodium per 2-ounce serving (55 grams) or 18% of the IDR.

    A 1 oz (28 gram) serving of bacon has 233 mg of sodium or 10% of the IDR. Turkey bacon can contain the same amount of sodium, so you should check the nutrition label.

    A 1-ounce serving of salted pork used to flavor dishes such as baked beans and clam chowder has 399 mg of sodium, or 17% of the IDR, and almost double the fat of bacon

    For good health, you should limit the use of these processed meats, regardless of the sodium count.

    The bottom line
    Many people far exceed the maximum recommendation of 2,300 mg of sodium per day.

    In addition, your risk of developing high blood pressure sensor to salt increases with age.

    To reduce sodium intake, it is best to minimize processed, packaged and restaurant foods, as they introduce a lot of sodium that you should not suspect.

    Processed meats, such as ham, sausages, dried meat, sausages, and hot dogs, are especially high in sodium. Even smooth and frozen shrimp are often treated with sodium-rich additives.

    Convenience foods, which include boxed potatoes, canned soup, instant pudding, food helpers, pizza and frozen foods, also tend to be high in sodium, as are salty snacks such as cracklings and pretzels.

    Some manufacturers are gradually reducing sodium in certain packaged foods, but the change is happening slowly. Anyway, many of these foods are not healthy anyway.

    It is always better to opt for whole foods that are not processed.