You consume sodium every single day, and that's a good thing! Our bodies need sodium to help maintain water and mineral balances and blood volume. But too much of a good thing (sodium in this case) can have negative effects on your health, such as an increased risk for high blood pressure (which contributes to heart disease and stroke). While most of us get enough sodium each day to meet our bodies' needs (about 1,500 milligrams), the average person consumes way too much! Experts recommend that adults consume less than 2,300 milligrams of sodium daily-that's about 1 teaspoon of salt. |
Sodium is a mineral that occurs naturally in foods that you eat every day, including meats, nuts, grains, and dairy. Salt and sodium are not the same things-but salt is made from sodium (and chloride). What you might not realize, however, is that "hidden" sodium found in processed foods (in the form of salt) makes up the largest proportion of the sodium that adults consume (in addition to any salt that you add yourself).
Cutting back on sodium is one action you can take to reduce your risk of high blood pressure and its related complications. In addition, a low-sodium diet can help decrease the amount of swelling you experience during pregnancy. Keep in mind that your taste buds are probably accustomed to a strong taste of salt, so limiting your consumption might take a little getting used to, but your health is worth it! Here are some sodium-cutting tips you can try today:
Easy Ways to Cut Sodium Intake
Decrease Swelling & Disease Risk by Reducing Your Salt Intake
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