Excessive sodium in the diet is the most urgent threat to health according to the Center for Science in the Public Interest. Dr. Jackson Wright, who manages a hypertension program at the University Hospitals Case Medical Centers, concurs saying we consume ten times more salt than is necessary for health.
Statistics support these allegations because:
- The American Heart Association recommends that each individual consume 1,500mg of salt per day yet the average person consumes more than 3,500mg.
- 150,000 lives could be saved every year by halving salt intake, according to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.
- A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine found that America can prevent 120,000 cases of heart disease and 92,000 heart attacks simply by reducing daily salt intake by half-teaspoon.
- Researchers at Harvard concluded that “excess sodium accounts for the 2.3 million deaths each year around the world.”
Avoid These Food Groups Filled with Sodium
If we are going to prevent the incidence of chronic kidney disease, we have to cut down on our consumption of the following foods that contain high levels of sodium.
- Processed Meats
Bacon, ham, smoked salmon, turkey breast and other cured meats are salted and then preserved with sodium nitrite. The human body breaks down sodium nitrite into compounds called nitrosamines which are identified as cancer-causing by the World Health Organisation.
- Fast Foods
When you eat a burger, a soda and fries daily you are getting 1,240mg of salt from a single meal, causing the kidneys to work hard daily and creating conditions suitable for hypertension.
- Popcorn at the Movie Theater
Researchers have found that the jumbo size popcorn bucket can contain up to 1,500mg of sodium, 1,100 empty calories and 60g of saturated fat.
- Packaged Foods
Salt and sodium-containing preservatives and artificial flavors (sodium benzoate, sodium phosphate, sodium ascorbate, etc.) are added to basically every frozen dinner, salad dressing, canned foods, baked goods, cheeses and every packaged food. This is why most nutritionists recommend that we avoid processed foods.
- Canned Soups
Many commercially made soups contain 1,300mg of sodium, so if you like soup you are better off making your own at home.
Your health is your responsibility, so make an informed decision to avoid these very convenient but deadly foods.