What Foods Hide High Sodium ?

Make no mistake about it. We need salt (Sodium) to live. It is important for fluid balance, muscle strength and for our nerves to work. On the other hand, most of us suffer from too much of a good thing – salt. We need around 2000 milligrams a day and medical experts say that many of us should cut it to 1500. So, how do we get ourselves to consume too much salt? The answer for most of us is – unwittingly.

Much of the salt we consume is hidden in other foods, it doesn’t come from the salt shaker on our table at all.

WebMD gives a list of offenders starting with frozen dinners.

" a five ounce turkey and gravy dinner can pack 787 mg of Sodium."

” … a five ounce turkey and gravy dinner can pack 787 mg of Sodium.”

Some ready to eat cereals are big offenders, like raisin bran, but puffed rice and puffed wheat are sodium free, says WebMD.

Raisin bran can have as much as 250 mg per cup.

Raisin bran can have as much as 250 mg per cup.

One that surprised me was canned and bottled vegetable juices which seem like the essence of healthy eating. One cup of vegetable juice cocktail has 479 mg of Sodium.

Veggie drinks can be big offenders.

Veggie drinks can be big offenders.

WebMD goes on to list canned vegetables, packaged deli meats, canned soups, marinades and flavorings, spaghetti sauce, salty peanuts, pretzels, potato chips, ketchup, sweet relish. You can read them all at the WebMD link above.

The bottom line is that you really have to read food labels. That gives you a running start on protecting your health and controlling your weight. Also, you have to pay attention to serving size. A label may give an attractive-looking number, but if there are several servings in a package, you may be consuming more salt than you planned.



Filed under calories, food labels, portion control, portion size, salt, snack foods, Snacking, sodium, Weight

2 responses to “What Foods Hide High Sodium ?

  1. Great blog, Tony. One sure way to avoid all that extra sodium is to stay away from processed boxed foods or frozen “convenience” dinners. Only when we learn to cook our own meals, from wholesome, fresh ingredients, can we hope to control the amount of sodium and other nutrients in our diets.

    One note: I’m sure you meant caned or bottled veggie juices in your post, not fresh blended or extracted juice from fresh veggies.

    Keep up the good work. I look forward to reading more of your posts.


    • Thanks, Chef –

      You are exactly right about the processed foods. It’s tough to beat the Sodium problem if you don’t eat fresh.

      Thanks for the observation on canned and bottled. I have clarified.




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