The “Salty Six”- Which Foods to Avoid?
The “Salty Six”, as the American Heart Association is calling them, are extremely common everyday foods that people do not realize are packed with a high amount of sodium, which severely increases a person’s risk of developing a stroke or heart problems. Now, the AHA is revealing easy ways to lower salt consumption, even on the go. While shopping, consumers can look for the Heart-Check Mark to know which foods have been approved by the AHA as having a healthy amount of sodium.
In the U.S., salt consumption is a major issue. A new study by AHA and ASA revealed that the average American has a daily salt intake level of around 3,400 milligrams, while the recommended amount is 1,500 milligrams. This is mostly due to processed foods and restaurant foods which account for 75% of our salt consumption.
The 6 following foods are the main sources of sodium in society’s diet today:
- Bread and rolls – Bread is packed with carbs and calories, but according to the new report, it is also high in salt, even though it does not taste salty. One piece of bread can have more than 230 milligrams of sodium, which accounts for 15% of the recommended daily amount.
- Cold cuts and cured meats – Although cold cuts are normally seen as a healthy way to go, deli meat and pre-packaged turkey can hold up to 1,050 milligrams of sodium, and it is added to most cooked meats to keep them from spoiling.
- Pizza – Pizza contains fat, calories and cholesterol, but according to the report, it also contains high levels of sodium, around 760 milligrams per slice.
- Poultry – The common belief is that chicken is not bad for you. However, sodium levels found in poultry are always different, depending on how it is prepared. The best option is to stick with grilled, lean, skinless chicken, even though these kinds still have added sodium.
- Soup – Although soup is not considered unhealthy, especially because Moms use it as a remedy when children are sick, it can contain up to 940 milligrams per serving.
- Sandwiches – Whether it be a hamburger, tuna sandwich, or a grilled cheese, the bread of a sandwich and cured meats both contain sodium, and when ketchup or mustard is added to the mix, a sandwich could have as much as 1,500 milligrams of sodium.