How can I reduce sodium in my diet?

There are many things you can do to reduce the amount of sodium in your diet.

1. Avoid adding salt to food at the table or while cooking.

2. Avoid commercially prepared and packaged foods whenever possible.

  • Frozen entrees, pizzas, and boxed pasta/macaroni and cheese; rice, noodle, and stuffing mixes with seasoning packets

3. Limit intake of highly processed or salty snacks.

  • Crackers, chips, pretzels, popcorn, nuts, cheeses

4. Limit canned foods.

  • Canned vegetables, beans, soups, sauces, gravy mixes, and salted fish

5. Stay away from fast food items.

  • Chinese food, French fries

6. Use sauces, gravies, and condiments sparingly.

  • Soy sauce, teriyaki sauce, steak sauce, Worcestershire sauce, salad dressings, ketchup, barbeque sauce, hot sauce, pickles, and olives.

7. Limit processed deli meats and cheeses.

  • Ham, bacon, sausage, cold cuts, hot dogs

8. Limit beverages that are high in sodium.

  • Tomato juice and vegetable juice cocktail

9. Be aware that baking powder and baking soda contain sodium too.

10. Read all nutrition labels carefully for sodium content. Pay special attention to serving size and servings per container.

11. Seek out lower sodium versions of traditionally high sodium items by looking for the following phrases on food labels:

  • Sodium-free: almost no sodium
  • Very low-sodium: 35 mg or less in each serving
  • Low-sodium: 140 mg or less in each serving
  • Reduced sodium: look for percentage
  • Unsalted, no salt added or without added salt