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10 ways to cut down salt in your diet

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While too little salt is not healthy, too much salt can also send danger signals to your body. But if you already have problems of hypertension, high blood pressure or are prone to gaining weight, then you must cut down on sodium.

We tell you the top 10 ways to cut down salt in your diet.

1.Cook food with less salt

Do you tend to keep on adding salt while cooking food? If you want to cut down sodium intake then you need to practise the art of adding less salt and get used to that taste. Keep a fixed measurement for the size of servings and follow that every time you cook.

2.Ditch the habit of adding extra salt at dinner table

Do not keep salt shakers on table because it makes your habit bad. Even if the salt level is adequate you sprinkle salts on the top. This drastically increases sodium inside the body. So the best solution is to stay away from this ritual.

3.Look for alternatives of salt

Now it’s not easy to let go the habit of adding salt in one go. You need to consciously train yourself for that. How? Look for alternatives of salt. Grind pepper and your favorite herbs and spices. Make sure they are salt free. Keep them on table and use it for garnishing whenever needed.

4.Dilute the salt in gravies and soups

If you are a fan of canned food products, you can still reduce the sodium content of that food with water. Dilute the soup with water or broth. Add herbs like lemon grass, parsley, rosemary, oregano, basil, parsnip, shallots and coriander. They will absorb the salt. You can also blend it with fresh vegetables, especially potatoes.

5.Limit intake of processed foods

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Processed meat products like corned beef, salami, salmon, sausages, cured bacon, chicken loaf, patties, French fries, potato wedges, etc. contain high amounts of salts. So even if you are tempted with to eat them, you need to refrain from buying. This way your salt intake is minimized to a large extent.

6.Control craving for fast foods

Pizzas, burgers, potato fries and other types of fried foods are loaded with salts. Secondly, their topping and seasonings like cheese and mayonnaise also contain considerable amount of sodium that can affect the electrolyte balance of your body.

7.Check the salt level in foods that you buy

The salt content of the same food product can substantially vary from one brand to other. Thus, you need to research a bit while buying foods. MSG, baking soda, sodium alginate, baking powder, disodium phosphate, and sodium nitrate are all compounds of sodium. You can skip these items in your grocery list.

8.Have salt free snacks

Make a smart choice while buying snacks. Make sure the whole grains and its products you buy are low in salts. Similarly do not eat salted peanuts, cashews, pistachios, etc. Have their salt free versions. It’s much healthy.

9.Eat more natural and fresh foods

Yes, natural and fresh foods are a lot healthier than the processed and canned varieties. You can customize a low salt recipe if you have high blood pressure or prone to gaining weight. Next time you step in a supermarket, make a move to the fresh section of vegetables, fruits and meat. Also look for unsalted version of canned foods.

10.Balance it out with potassium rich foods

Although we do not insist you to balance it out with potassium every time, but you can use this tactic once a while. If you couldn’t control you cravings and ended up eating salt coated foods, then neutralize its effects with potassium rich foods like rice bran, nuts, coconut water, sunflower seeds, etc.

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Written by: Saptakee sengupta
Date last updated: January 17, 2015

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