No Salt, Please: How can You Reduce Salt Intake?
When you are looking at a package, read any ingredient that has the word sodium in it. For example, sodium nitrate is usually found in processed, preserved or smoked type of foods.
It's really a mathematical game if you're looking to achieve 2300 mg of sodium, not many people write the numbers down or add them up during the day. The value of looking at a label or practically at a label is to keep a mental score to see if you are eating something super high in sodium.
A can of SpaghettiO's contains 809 mg -- you'll need to keep an eye throughout the day if you add two other meals and a snack. And, the assumption that because a food is advertised as healthy does not guarantee appropriate sodium levels. If you have 210 milligrams in cheerios, that is heavy-handed. There are lower sodium products out there -- oat products and other breakfast grains are alternatives.
Eating Out: No Salt, Please
When you're out at a restaurant, the sodium in your prepared meal can be high. Most restaurants don't indicate whether something is high in sodium or not. You have to do your own investigation.
Remember, the menu is merely a suggestion and not set in stone. So if you're going somewhere, you can ask the wait service to prepare meals in your way.
You have to explain that you have a medical condition and ask for a meal not high in sodium. Or you can just simply say, "Don't put salt in my food." And you can add whatever you want at the table to meet your tastes.
No MSG Please
Ask for no MSG -- mono sodium glutamate -- typically used as a flavor enhancer in a variety of foods most, notably found in Asian offerings and that style of cooking. It's not necessarily in all foods and an added ingredient. So ask for no MSG when you are at a restaurant.
Substitute: Salt Isn't Your Only Option
In addition to eating out less, you can control the amounts of salt you add into food when cooking. In your cupboard you have a variety of herbs that can appease your salty palate.
Cook more with herbs. Fresh squeezed lemon or lime on food can give a lot of zest and chopped garlic, cinnamon, nutmeg, oregano, rosemary –- all appeal to your salty taste without adding a lot of sodium to your diet.
Salt is just one seasoning to make your food taste good but it shouldn't be the one that you always reach for. Maybe try the pepper shaker instead.