Maria Adams, MS, MPH, RD
Sodium (salt) is a mineral found in many foods. We need sodium for important bodily functions such as muscle contraction and water balance. On a 2 gram (2,000 milligrams [mg]) sodium diet you will be limiting the amount of high-sodium foods that you eat.
A low-sodium diet can prevent or lower
high blood pressure, and prevent and improve edema (water retention), which can occur with conditions such as heart failure and kidney disease. The foods highest in sodium include table salt (about half sodium), processed foods, condiments, seasonings, convenience foods, and preserved foods. Just 1 teaspoon of salt has 2,400 milligrams (mg) of sodium.
Examples of processed foods include canned foods, frozen dinners, snack foods, packaged starchy foods (seasoned rice, instant mashed potatoes, macaroni and cheese), baking mixes, deli meats and cheeses, sausages, and cured or smoked meats.
American Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
American Heart Association
Dietitians of Canada
Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada
Choose foods low in sodium. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute website. Available at: http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/educational/healthdisp/pdf/tipsheets/Choose-Foods-Low-in-Sodium.pdf. Updated December 2013. Accessed September 13, 2016.
Dietary interventions for cardiovascular disease prevention. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T115449/Dietary-interventions-for-cardiovascular-disease-prevention. Updated August 18, 2016. Accessed September 13, 2016.
Shaking the salt habit. American Heart Association website. Available at: http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/HighBloodPressure/PreventionTreatmentofHighBloodPressure/Shaking-the-Salt-Habit_UCM_303241_Article.jsp. Updated September 9, 2016. Accessed September 13, 2016.
Last reviewed September 2016 by Dianne Scheinberg Rishikof MS, RD, LDN
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