Sadly, too many products advertise themselves as “low sodium,” when they really aren’t (under 500 mg per meal). The claim simply means the respective food has less sodium than the usual product. Reducing sodium from 1,200 mg to 800 mg in a sandwich doesn’t make it “low sodium.” That simply means the item in question has gone from containing a ludicrous amount of sodium, to a ridiculous amount. Neither amount is acceptable, particularly when we consider The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends no more than 2,300 mg per day. Not per meal, but per day. Too make the issue even more baffling, food just doesn’t require that much seasoning.
A single ground beef patty at an eatery usually contains around 378 mg of sodium. To compare, one patty of ground beef made at home contains only around 60 mg of sodium (for 3 ounces of beef). So, where does all that salt come from? Why is it there? We simply don’t know.
Excessive salt is an epidemic in modern society. It’s in our bottled water, milk, sauces, dressings, soups, condiments, snacks, and particularly any entrée or full meals. Every restaurant, every fast food chain, and every store carries foods so packed with sodium there’s little room for the actual product. It’s an insane world, and the sodium intake of the western diet only reinforces that notion. Take heart, however, food does not actually require that much salt.