Only 3% of Americans consume the recommended 1500mg or less of sodium per day. Yes, there are some concerns about Americans who don’t take in enough ironically, but doctors have been recommending for years that many Americans reduce their sodium to fight or prevent strokes. High sodium intake can increase your risk of stroke by increasing blood pressure, and talk about other heart disease risks. It’s scary. So yes, if you take in too much sodium, you do need to seriously think about it. You can’t just ignore it and pretend the problem isn’t there.
Especially with prepackaged foods,
it is difficult to adhere to guidelines for sodium intake because sodium is very common in food supply according to Cheryl Anderson PhD of the University of California at San Diego School of Medicine’s Division of Preventative Medicine. He continues,
To meet guidelines, it is recommended that Americans prepare and consume fresh foods instead of packaged or processed foods.
However, a new study is testing out various ways to lower sodium intake, and it’s promising. They are teaching participants to season their food with other spices, and compared to the control groups so far, the test group has significantly reduced their sodium intake. They use 2 phases. Phase 1 includes low sodium diet foods with flavored herbs and spices. They focus on things like olive oil, coffee extract, cherry extract, paprika, and smokehouse pepper. They also use seasonings like lemon juice, garlic, onion powder, and even honey.
Phase 2 leaves the test subjects to their own devices. Their intake is not controlled, and they are expected to be self sufficient, taking the things they have learned into their daily lives.
End of the day, the groups were able to reduce their sodium intake. However, the test group reduced their sodium intake much more significantly than the placebo group. If they can do so without feeling deprived or cheated, we can create some significant benefits and really achieve.