7 Ways to Tame Your Salt Habit

Your body needs salt to function, but too much of it raises your blood pressure, a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke. Here's how to cut back (8 Photos)

Arricca Elin SanSone on Feb 17, 2012 at 5:43PM

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7 Ways to Tame Your Salt Habit

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Learn to Find Hidden Salt Content on Food Labels

While there’s sodium in almost everything, the amount of sodium in things like condiments can be shocking. When you read a food's ingredients, salt (sodium chloride) isn't the only thing you should be looking for. There are other sodium-containing compounds such as monosodium glutamate (MSG), sodium nitrate or nitrite and sodium alginate, which will up the total sodium count. One tablespoon of soy sauce has 920 mg of sodium; even soy labeled “low sodium” has 575 mg of sodium. Other big offenders include teriyaki sauce (690 mg per tablespoon), tomato sauce (640 mg per half cup) and barbecue sauce (420 mg per two tablespoons). “If you overdo it at one meal, make sure you make low-sodium choices the rest of the day,” says Tanner-Blasiar. Also, low-fat doesn’t mean low-sodium -- when food companies take out fat, they often replace it with salt to boost flavor.

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