Hidden Salt Can Threaten Your Health

Approximately 9 in 10 Americans aged 2 years and older eat too much sodium. too much sodium increases a person's risk for high blood pressure, and high blood pressure often leads to heart disease and is the most important modifiable risk factor for stroke.

Simply avoiding the salt shaker doesn't mean you are safe from excess sodium. Most sodium consumed comes from packaged, processed, store-bought and restaurant food. Even foods that otherwise seem healthy may have high levels of sodium (e.g., cottage cheese and turkey breast luncheon meat). With sodium hidden in all these foods, it can be challenging to reduce sodium in the diet.

So what can be done? As an individual, it is important to read nutritional labels and not ingest more than 2,300 mg a day. Try to avoid processed food and cook meals at home with a variety of spices, not just salt. Communities can:

  • Increase public awareness about the amount of sodium added to processed and packaged foods.
  • Increase public access to healthy, fresh food.

Encourage grocery stores and restaurants to make lower sodium available in store and on the menu.

Want to know more?

Million Hearts

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Tags: CDC, Healthier Foods in Communities

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