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Low Sodium Diet

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Low Sodium Diet
Learn how you can incorporate a low sodium diet into your lifestyle. Limit the consumption of processed and convenience foods that are high in salt.

Sodium is a mineral salt that is found in many foods. Sodium plays a vital role in regulating body fluids. Typically we need about 1,500 mg and 2,300 mg per day per day. Sodium plays a vital role in balancing our body fluids, sweat, urine, tears and semen. The salt also aids digestion and allows for nerve transmission. Many health conditions require that the person reduce the intake of sodium. Low sodium diets need some getting used to. Read up this informative guide to maintaining a low sodium diet and how to avoid too much salt in your daily diet.

Low sodium diet

Convenience foods and dressings such as mayonnaise, ketchup, catsup, mustard and pickle relish are usually high on sodium. Processed foods such as canned soups and vegetables and frozen meals are high in sodium. Smoked meats, pastrami, bologna and pepperoni are all high on salt. Barbecue sauce, soy sauce, bouillon cubes, popcorn and pretzels must be consumed in limited quantities.

High salt foods have shown a link to kidney disease, stomach cancer and intestinal disease. Too much salt in your diet leads to water retention and leaves you feeling bloated and swollen. Patients suffering from heart failure are advised to go easy on sodium and move over to low sodium diets. Reducing sodium consumption reduces your risk to developing high blood pressure and heart ailments. Too much sodium causes fluid buildup in the body leading to swelling in the ankles, weight gain and shortness of breath. Salt substitutes found in the market use potassium. Check with your physician before you used salt substitutes since potassium is not advisable for many.

  • Do not use the salt shaker at the table.

  • Avoid processed foods. Instead opt for freshly cooked food.

  • Opt for skim or low-fat milk and milk products.

  • Use lemon juice, vinegar or pepper for seasoning.

  • Steer clear of brine and monosodium glutamate

  • Many sauces and gravies are high in salt content. Go in for broiled or grilled food.

  • Choose fresh foods over pre-cooked and processed foods.

  • Avoid fast foods and luncheon meats.

  • Read labels carefully when buying nuts, chips and crackers.

  • Reduce the consumption of canned vegetables and vegetable juices.

  • Limit the consumption of salted snack foods and prepared mixes. Choose homemade soups instead.

  • Do not consume too many carbonated beverages.

You can add large helpings of fresh vegetables in your low sodium diet. Dark green or deep yellow vegetables are particularly rich in Vitamin A. Citrus fruits and their juices can be consumed. Prepare your food using lemon, ginger, vinegar and pepper. Keep salt to the minimum. Try to steer clear of flavored salts such as garlic salt and onion salt. Play around with spices and herbs like basil, parsley, cilantro and cinnamon for flavor.

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