foods with sodium: Excessive consumption of sodium is considered the main dietary risk associated with high blood pressure, with an increased risk of stroke, with cardiovascular disease r and premature death.
Sodium intake in some countries population exceeds the recommendations of the World Health Organization (WHO) by 25 milligrams per day since total intakes reach 2,025 mg of sodium per day, that is, approximately 5.06 grams per day salt (excluding salt added at the table or during cooking). These are the results of the Anibes study, carried out in 2,009 individuals between 9 and 75 years old, and recently published in the scientific journal nutrients.
In recent years, prevention has been carried out in relation to the consumption of sodium in our daily diet due to the prevalence of arterial hypertension that exists, and several studies carried out show that in Argentina we consume on average 6 times more sodium than recommended .
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There are multiple diseases that can appear in the course of the life of a person with diabetes, which among their nutritional norms require reducing the sodium intake in the usual foods in the diet. For this reason, we have drawn up a list of foods classified according to their sodium content to avoid or consume in moderation some of them according to individual needs and each specific moment in the life of the diabetic.
The first thing is to explain the difference between salt and sodium . Salt is the common term used to refer to sodium chloride, which consists of 40% sodium and 60% chloride by weight (5 g of salt is approximately 2 g of sodium) and provides approximately 90% of the sodium consumed through of the diet.
That is why today we tell you what are the foods that we consume regularly and contain a large amount of sodium :
Very rich foods with sodium (more than 100 mg / 100 gr.):
- Canned meat and fish, seafood, charcuterie, offal, ham, egg.
- All the cheeses.
- Bread, toast, pastry, cookies.
- Olives, cabbage, chard, sorrel, spinach, celery, watercress and canned vegetables.
- Mustard, pickles.
- Gasified waters.
Medium rich foods (from 10 to 99 mg./100 gr.):
- Meat, fish, oysters, egg yolk.
- Milk, yogurt, cheese without salt.
- Radish, artichoke, lettuce, endive, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, chard, leeks, carrots, grapes, figs.
- Chocolate, chestnut cream.
Poor foods (less than 10 mg / 100 gr.):
- Lentils, beans.
- Unsalted bread, unsalted cookies, flour, semolina, pasta and rice.
- Potatoes, asparagus, green beans, turnip, mushrooms, onions, endives, lettuce, tomato, fresh fruit, almonds, walnuts and fruit preserves.
- Pepper, nutmeg, paprika, cinnamon, vanilla, coffee, cloves, fine herbs, garlic, thyme, bay leaf. Parsley. Tarragon, basil, fennel.
- Fruit juice, still water, cider, beer, wine.
We eat more sodium at dinner
This research, in which sodium intake has also been analyzed according to the different consumption occasions, has shown that dinner was the meal that most contributed to the daily sodium intake, since it represented between 30 and 37 % of total intake. After dinner, lunch was ranked next, providing 25-34% of the intake. Mid-morning and snack provided only between 5 and 11% of the total sodium intake.
“It is difficult to say what may be the reason why dinner is the meal of the day that contributes the most to sodium intake. What is clear is that Spaniards consume more foods with sodium at night. Let’s remember that the foods that contribute the most to sodium intake are sausages and other processed meat products, closely followed by bread, prepared meals, cheeses, and canned fish and shellfish, “say the researchers.
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However, Partearroyo and Varela consider it important to remember that dinner is usually the time of the day when it is usually eaten at home, “which means that we can adopt measures to reduce sodium consumption both at a personal and family level.”
Nutritional tips to not exceed the recommended sodium
Reducing the dietary intake of sodium is a very relevant public health objective, since the intakes of this macromineral in the Spanish population are above the recommendations at all ages, mainly in children.
salt consumption should be reduced to 1 g per day, especially in hypertensive patients or those with heart failure. In cases of advanced heart failure or difficult-to-control hypertension, cook without salt.
“Given the established health benefits of reducing salt in the diet, it would be advisable to continue, and even improve, current national initiatives of awareness and education campaigns and, in particular, food reformulation to decrease the overall intake of salt. salt in the Spanish population ”, indicate the authors of the Anibes study . They also offer the following recommendations to limit sodium intake now:
- Limit the consumption of prepared foods, bread, cheese, meat products, preserves and canned goods, due to their high sodium content.
- Avoid using pre-cooked sauces or concentrated flavors, as they are high in salt.
- Dressing salads and other dishes with pepper, onion, garlic, lemon, vinegar, oil, parsley … as substitutes for salt, since they provide a lot of flavor and are within the traditional concept of the Mediterranean diet .
- Cooking in water can be a culinary technique of choice when preparing foods that contain large amounts of sodium, since it passes into the cooking water by osmosis and, therefore, the sodium content of those foods with sodium is reduced. In the case of using this culinary technique, it must be taken into account that the cooking water should not be used.
- Reading the nutritional composition of the food we buy is a practice that we must do on a routine basis since many pre-cooked foods are high in salt.
People with high blood pressure and/or kidney disease should take special care in relation to sodium, avoiding these foods in their diet. But, in addition, the entire population, in general, should pay special attention to this issue and, even more, those who have risk factors such as a family history of hypertension or coronary heart disease, overweight or obesity, hypercholesterolemia, diabetes, tobacco habit and consumption of alcohol and sedentary lifestyle, because all of them, added to high sodium intake, are predisposing factors to hypertension, cerebrovascular accident or CVA, heart attacks, among others.
Let us be conscious consumers and choose healthy foods with sodium to improve the quality of our diet every day and avoid chronic non-communicable diseases.