You know that too much sodium is a bad thing, but did you know that there are some seemingly healthy foods that are high in sodium? Sodium is a micronutrient that the body needs in small amounts to help with nerve impulses and to help contract and relax muscles. While sodium is necessary for health, most people consume too much sodium which can put you at risk for heart disease and strokes. It can also cause you to hold onto water weight. To avoid the health problems of consuming too much sodium, the American Heart Association recommends 1500 milligrams per day. Since it is important to limit salt intake, it is wise to limit foods that are high in sodium, even if they seem like they are healthy.
Pickles seem like a healthy condiment to serve with sandwiches. However, pickles are one of the foods that are high in sodium even though they seem like a healthy choice. Just one pickle can contain 569 milligrams of sodium! So, while pickles may seem healthy because they are made from cucumbers, it is probably wise to limit how many you eat.
Sauerkraut is technically fermented cabbage, which can be quite healthy when it is unpasteurized, due to the healthy bacteria and vitamin C it contains. However, most sauerkraut that you purchase in the grocery store is pasteurized, and it is also high in sodium. One cup of sauerkraut can contain 939 milligrams of sodium! If you really like sauerkraut, consider using only small amounts to keep your sodium intake down.
3. Canned Beans
Beans are wonderful to include in your diet. They are high in protein and very low in fat. However, canned beans are also high in sodium. For example, one cup of canned kidney beans has 660 milligrams of sodium. To keep your sodium intake low and still get the health benefit of beans, purchase low sodium canned beans or cook your own.
4. Canned Tomatoes
Canned tomatoes are great to use in sauces, soups, and stews, and they can be healthy if you are careful to buy low sodium canned tomatoes. If you don’t use low sodium canned tomatoes, you could be getting 563 milligrams of sodium for every cup of canned tomatoes you eat.
5. Vegetable Broth
Using vegetable broth to add flavor to soups and stews is a great idea. It is low in calories and fat free, but it is not necessarily low in sodium. One cup of vegetable broth can contain 550 milligrams of sodium. Therefore, you should stick to low sodium vegetable broth for your soups and stews.
6. V8 Juice
V8 Juice seems like a very healthy product because it has 8 different vegetables. However, it has a fair amount of sodium. One cup of V8 Juice has 481 milligrams of sodium. If you really like V8 juice, switch to low sodium V8 Juice because it only has 140 milligrams of sodium.
7. Cottage Cheese
You might be very surprised to learn that your high protein snack is also high in sodium. One cup of cottage cheese packs 918 milligrams of sodium! That’s a lot of sodium, which is why you should purchase cottage cheese that is low in sodium.
Sometimes eating healthy can seem like a challenge, especially when you learn that supposedly healthy foods are actually high in sodium. However, if you read nutrition labels, you can eat healthy and keep your sodium intake in check. Which of these foods were you surprised to learn has a lot of sodium?