Eating Less Sodium
Sodium is a mineral that makes up one part of table salt, or sodium chloride. The body needs sodium to help maintain fluid levels and is important for the nervous and muscular systems. In addition to the role sodium plays in the body, sodium is added to foods for taste and to extend shelf-life. While some sodium may be necessary in our diets, most Americans eat too much sodium by either adding salt during cooking or at the table or by eating too many processed foods. Too much sodium can increase the risk of heart disease and high blood pressure and therefore should be limited. You can decrease sodium in your diet by:
• Read Nutrition Fact Labels on packaged foods to help you select lower sodium items.
• Avoid using the salt shaker.
National Nutrition Month is an nutrition education campaign created by the Academy for Nutrition and Dietetics. The campaign focuses attention on the importance of making informed food choices and developing sound eating and physical activity habits. This month’s theme is all about getting your plate in better shape. Here are a few tips:
1. Fill at least 50%, or half, of your plate with fruits and vegetables.
2. Add fiber rich grains or starchy vegetables on 25% of your plate.
3. Portion the lean protein-rich foods on the remaining 25% of the plate.
4. Don’t forget to quench your thirst with a refreshing glass of milk or water.
Weekly Vegetable Sides
beans, broccoli, carrots, celery, coleslaw, corn, green beans, peas & potatoes
Weekly Fruit Sides
apples, apricots, bananas, mixed fruit cocktail, oranges, peaches, pears, pineapples, raisins & strawberries
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