START A PETITION 25,136,189 members: the world's largest community for good

You Eat More Salt Than You Think (infographic)

You Eat More Salt Than You Think (infographic)

Even if you never touch a salt shaker, it doesn’t mean you’re not eating a ton of salt. You may be surprised at how many of the foods you eat at home, as well as the foods you eat out, are loaded with salt.

According to the Harvard School of Public Health, our kidneys have trouble processing excess sodium, causing our bodies to retain water. That puts more pressure on blood vessels and makes more work for the heart. This can lead to high blood pressure (a leading cause of cardiovascular disease), heart attack, and stroke, among other things.

Our bodies need small amounts of sodium to function properly. For most healthy adults, current dietary guidelines recommend a maximum of 2,300 mg of sodium per day, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. However, a maximum of 1,500 mg of sodium per day is recommended for those over age 51, African-Americans, and people with high blood pressure, diabetes, or chronic kidney disease.

Avoiding the salt shaker isn’t enough. The key is to read labels on the foods we buy, and to bypass packaged foods whenever possible. As the infographic shows, sit down restaurants aren’t necessarily using less salt than fast food restaurants, so consumers should be aware.

Related Reading
Table Salt vs Sea Salt
Cutting Back on Salt? Use This Instead
10 Smart Uses for Salt

Infographics courtesy of the Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Main Post Photo: Jure Porenta, photographer | Hemera collection | Thinkstock

Read more: Diet & Nutrition, Eating for Health, Family, Food, Health, Health & Safety, Home, ,

have you shared this story yet?

go ahead, give it a little love

Ann Pietrangelo

Ann Pietrangelo is the author of No More Secs! Living, Laughing & Loving Despite Multiple Sclerosis and Catch That Look: Living, Laughing & Loving Despite Triple-Negative Breast Cancer. She is a freelance writer and member of the American Society of Journalists and Authors. Follow on Twitter @AnnPietrangelo


+ add your own
2:00AM PDT on Apr 9, 2014

Thank you :)

8:49AM PDT on Apr 1, 2014

It's amazing how much hidden salt there is.

6:19AM PDT on Apr 1, 2014

thank you

2:11PM PDT on Mar 31, 2014

More salt hating.

The big problem isn't salt, but the imbalance of sodium and potassium in our food supply, mostly caused by processed foods. Reducing salt does not improve blood pressure or heart disease, according to research:

Eat less processed foods and more bananas (or other things with lots of potassium) and you'll get better results than reducing salt.

But cultural mythology is hard to change.

---- Steve

5:54AM PDT on Mar 31, 2014

The art of knowing when to stop

5:26PM PDT on Mar 30, 2014

I rarely add salt!

5:18AM PDT on Mar 30, 2014

Nothing I've not heard before. It is time that the food industry shaped up!

2:09AM PDT on Mar 29, 2014

that is awful

2:48AM PDT on Mar 28, 2014


10:02PM PDT on Mar 26, 2014

Thank you.

add your comment

Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

people are talking

Shalvah L, thanks for the idea of adding oats to hot cocoa, that is something that I have not tried …

Que bebé hermoso. Gracias por compartir.

Where have all the birds gone, and the bees, and the frogs, and the bats, and now the fireflies... …

Fireflies and bees need to be saved NOW!

Same thing when a new baby arrives. Be sure not to neglect your dog.

Story idea? Want to blog? Contact the editors!

Select names from your address book   |   Help

We hate spam. We do not sell or share the email addresses you provide.