Tip

Do you know the leading source of sodium in the American diet?

Most people don’t.

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The Food and Drug Administration is finally urging food manufacturers to voluntarily limit the sodium they add to food.

The average American adult consumes at least 3,400 mg of sodium, much more than we need or is healthy for us.

“The link between sodium consumption and blood pressure is strong and well documented,” said Susan Mayne, FDA’s Director of  the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, in announcing the move.

High blood pressure increases the risk for heart disease, stroke, and premature death.

“The totality of scientific evidence, as reviewed by many well-respected scientific organizations, continues to support lowering sodium consumption from current levels,” Mayne explained.

Three-quarters of the sodium we consume is added by companies and restaurants to the food we eat.  Very little is added during home cooking or at the table.

The leading source of sodium in our diet?

Breads and rolls!  A slice of bread can have as much as 230 mg of sodium and most of us eat bread, often every day.

The next nine leading sources of sodium:

  • Cold cuts and cured meats
  • Pizza
  • Poultry
  • Soups
  • Sandwiches
  • Cheese
  • Pasta dishes (not including mac and cheese)
  • Meat dishes
  • Snacks

These 10 types of food account for more than 40 percent of the sodium we eat each day!  Once manufacturers add sodium, we can’t really take it out. That’s why it’s critical for the nation’s health that companies cut back on the amounts they put in.