The increasing problem of obesity in USA has convinced many people to opt for healthy living. This means choosing a diet plan that is loaded with fruits and vegetables and becoming physically active. Surprisingly, many of us are still unaware about the amount of salt we should include in our healthy eating habits. University of Illinois states that Americans eat 2300-6900 mg sodium every day, which is well above the maximum limit. According to Dietary Guidelines for Americans, children and most adults should stick to 1500 mg of sodium in their diet plan. Considering the fact that the eating habits of most Americans consist of extra salt, we provide healthy tips for switching to a low-salt diet.
Avoid processed food
One of the main reasons why most Americans eat a high-salt diet plan is that we include loads of processed and canned food in our eating plan. This is proved by the FDA report that states that 75% of our salt intake comes from processed and junk food. Dietary Guidelines for Americans state that apart from junk food, sodium can be present in healthy foods such as soups, ready-to-eat cereals and salad dressings.
FDA states that for healthy living, one should start eating fresh fruits and veggies. Iowa State Daily agrees with the fact that eating freshly produced natural products is crucial for a healthy lifestyle. It further states that people with a limited budget can include frozen fruits and vegetables in their diet and they won’t have to compromise on the salt factor either.
Use other flavor-enhancers
Most of us would agree with the fact that we add salt to the healthy meals to enhance the taste. Sally Barclay, nutritional expert opines that for good living; consider using herbs and spices while rustling up meals. Barclay adds that spices and herbs are rich in antioxidants and including them in your diet will contribute in good living. University of Illinois reports that for healthy living, you can opt for herbs and spices such as thyme, garlic powder and basil.
According to Barclay, Americans can make a healthy choice by opting for sodium-free substitutes. It will retain the taste, while allowing you to stick to the recommended sodium intake. However, these substitutes may not be suitable for people who are suffering from heart and kidney problems. Therefore, it is safer to consult the doctor about them beforehand.
Skip ketchups and dips
Many people think that certain dishes taste better when they are eaten with ketchups, sauce and dips. Experts agree that sauces and ketchups are loaded with sodium and contribute to the high-salt diet of Americans. Speaking on this issue Barclay says, “Limit use of sodium-laden condiments. Soy sauce, salad dressings, sauces, dips, ketchup, mustard and relish all contain sodium. Look for lower sodium versions or dilute regular versions; for instance, I dilute sodium sauce 50 percent with water.”Use your creativity for cooking salt-free tasty dishes.
Read nutritional labels
Cleveland Clinic states that for switching to a low-salt diet, start reading food labels. Gathering information about the sodium content in your food is crucial for making informed choices about your daily salt intake. FDA reports that buying foods that have 5% or less value of sodium is a healthy idea. For relishing a healthy lifestyle, avoid buying foods that contain 20% or more value of sodium. Shop around for salt-free or reduced sodium products.
Nutritional experts agree that while it is crucial to limit salt in your healthy eating plans, it may not be possible to reduce it drastically. University of Illinois states that for good living, aim to cut down your salt intake gradually. Allow your taste buds to adjust and slowly introduce it to any other flavor enhancer. Stay healthy and happy!