Friday, April 1, 2011

Salt, Salt Everywhere....

As promised, here is the follow-up to my previous post about the dangers of salt. We dutifully wrote down the sodium content in everything we ate for three days (probably should have done it for a little longer) to see what our current sodium intake is and then talk about ways to reduce.

The Good: Both of us are consuming on average between 1,200 and 2,200 Mg of sodium per day. Mine was a little lower and AJ's was a little higher, mostly because lunch meat is loaded with sodium.

The Bad: Eating anything processed packed on the sodium. For instance Pillsbury biscuits have over 500 Mgs per biscuit, and you know you can't just eat one :) I was also surprised at some of the meals I prepared being higher in sodium than I would have expected; next time I'll try to keep that in check. Lastly, condiments are very high in sodium, salad dressing really surprised me, but it made me keep portions in control and I found that I can actually use less than a serving and still have a tasty salad.

The Ugly: Eating out not only made it hard to calculate a total for food, but it definitely has a higher sodium content than eating at home. A sausage and egg biscuit from McDonald's packs a staggering 1170 Mgs of sodium, and that doesn't include the hash browns and ketchup. Restaurant eating will make staying under the recommended total difficult if you do it often.

What are we taking away from this? Well luckily thanks to changes we were already making our average intake was lower than I thought it would be, so that's encouraging. On the down side there are still a lot of changes that we can make that will mean a healthier diet in general. Also, I think that we should probably start keeping track again for at least a few more days to get a better average. How about you? Are you thinking about making changes in some of the bad foods you eat?

Next challenge will be tracking sugar. That will be my downfall.