5 Ingredients to Banish from Meals

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Even if you don't have high blood pressure currently, it is likely that your salt intake is 1/3 more than suggested by the Center for Disease Control. They report that Americans, on the average, consume about 3,436 mg of sodium per day. This is 1,136 mg more than suggested. It is about 1,500 mg more than what high-risk people, like someone over 40 years of age, should consume.

African-Americans and people with a history of high blood pressure are also considered high risk. Measured out, this amounts to one teaspoon per day. Now, reflect on how much salt you add at the dinner table and then add that to the sodium already present in the processed or frozen and canned foods you consumed today.

Processed foods are some of the highest contributing factors to a salty diet. Picking the salt off your pretzel won't do much, but purchasing fresh vegetables and making your own soups and stews gives you control over your health and sodium intake.

The easiest thing to do is just stop making the salt available for everyday use. Out of sight, out of mind. Next, try replacing it with some tasty alternatives. Try garlic powder, different varieties of pepper, fresh herbs, or fresh lemon wedges.