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How much salt is too much?

By: Sabine Saoud RD, FAND

Salt is an essential nutrient that serves as a stabilizer, flavor and to improve color.

The dietary guidelines for 2020-2025 recommends limit sodium to the Chronic Disease Risk Reduction (CDRR) levels defined by the National Academies

1,200 mg/day for ages 1 through 3

1,500 mg/day for ages 4 through 8

1,800 mg/day for ages 9 through 13

2,300 mg/day for all other age groups

The CDRR for sodium was established using evidence of the benefit of reducing sodium intake on cardiovascular risk and hypertension risk.

Tips for reducing sodium in the diet

  • Choose fresh, frozen or canned food items without added salts

  • Limit salty snacks like chips and pretzels replace with unsalted

  • Select unsalted, lower sodium, fat-free broths, bouillons or soups

  • Select fat-free or low-fat milk, low-sodium, low-fat cheeses and low-fat yogurt

  • Learn to use spices and herbs to enhance the taste of your food

  • Specify how you want your food prepared when dining out

  • Read nutrition labels and specifically the sodium content

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