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Experts call for accelerated national sodium reduction initiatives
Date:4/20/2010

Based Strategies and Culinary Insights." (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/salt/tasting-success-with-cutting-salt/index.html) Among the recommendations:

  • Produce first: Fill half your plate with fruits and vegetables. Our bodies need more potassium than sodium, and many fruits and vegetables are good sources of potassium. In addition, produce, which is naturally low in sodium, will displace other high-sodium foods on your plate.
  • Go nuts for healthy fats in the kitchen: Fat is a great carrier and enhancer of flavor, and using the right fats (including healthy oils, nuts, and avocados) can help make up for any flavor loss from using less salt.
  • Know your seasons, and, even better, your farmer. Shop for raw ingredients with maximum natural flavor, thereby avoiding the need to add as much (if any) salt.
  • Sear, saut, and roast. Take the time to learn some simple cooking techniques that can boost flavors and make your cooking less reliant on sodium.
  • Spice it up. One of the easiest ways to reduce the need for added salt is through the use of ingredients such as spices, dried and fresh herbs, roots (such as garlic and ginger), citrus, vinegars, and wine.

"Many chefs and food product developers are already hard at work on multipronged initiatives to reduce sodium," said Greg Drescher, CIA's executive director of strategic initiatives and a member of the IOM sodium reduction committee. "We encourage all chefs to think as broadly as possible about ways to reduce sodium, since the sodium issue is not merely about saltiness. It's about flavor, and about the many different strategies chefs and all of us can use to create sensational flavors."

Americans, on average, consume the equivalent of about a teaspoon and a half of salt each day (3,400 milligrams of sodium). The IOM report outlines the s
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Contact: Todd Datz
tdatz@hsph.harvard.edu
617-998-8819
Harvard School of Public Health
Source:Eurekalert

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