Low-Sodium Diets for High Blood Pressure

  • Any amount of salt is bad for your health.

     

    A. Myth

     

    B. Fact

    Correct Answer
    The correct answer is myth. Salt contains sodium. Your body needs sodium to work properly. Sodium helps your body control many functions. But too much can be bad for you. If you have high blood pressure or heart failure, you may have to limit how much salt you eat every day.
  • To lower high blood pressure, you should limit how much sodium you get to:

     

    A. 5,000 mg per day

     

    B. 3,500 mg per day

     

    C. 2,300 mg per day

    Correct Answer
    The correct answer is 2,300 mg per day. For some people, 1,500 mg a day is an even better goal. Ask your doctor how much sodium you should have. Also ask about ways to limit salt in your diet.
  • Which is most likely to be low in salt?

     

    A. Fresh vegetables

     

    B. Canned vegetables

     

    C. Canned fruit

     

    D. None of the above

    Correct Answer
    The correct answer is fresh vegetables. Fresh fruits and vegetables are naturally low in salt. Canned foods often contain salt to preserve the color of the food and keep it looking fresh. Try to buy fresh foods whenever possible.
  • Foods that are low in sodium may be labeled:

     

    A. Sodium-free

     

    B. No salt added

     

    C. Sodium-reduced

     

    D. Unsalted

     

    E. Any of the above

    Correct Answer
    The correct answer is any of the above. Even if you see one of these terms, it's best to check the label for the exact salt content. Choose products with less than 100 mg of salt per serving.
  • Which seasoning is low in sodium?

     

    A. Garlic salt

     

    B. Monosodium glutamate

     

    C. Pepper

     

    D. Onion salt

     

    E. All of the above

    Correct Answer
    The correct answer is pepper. When you cook, you can replace salt with other seasonings. Fresh garlic, herbs, pepper, and lemon are also good choices. Avoid packaged spice blends. They often contain salt. Over time, you won't miss the salt in foods.
  • Which food is always high in salt?

     

    A. Hot dogs

     

    B. Potato chips

     

    C. Bacon

     

    D. Olives

     

    E. Pickles

     

    F. All of the above

    Correct Answer
    The correct answer is all of the above. It's best to steer clear of these salty foods, as well as smoked meats, ham, salami, and anchovies. Other salty culprits to avoid include soy and Worcestershire sauces, tomato and other vegetable juices, and most cheeses.
  • Tap water may contain salt.

     

    A. Myth

     

    B. Fact

    Correct Answer
    The correct answer is fact. Home water softeners add salt to water. If you have one, limit how much tap water you drink. Drink bottled water instead.
  • Which salad dressing can help you follow a low-sodium diet?

     

    A. Ranch

     

    B. French

     

    C. Blue cheese

     

    D. Oil and vinegar

     

    E. All of the above

    Correct Answer
    The correct answer is oil and vinegar. Most bottled salad dressings and salad dressing mixes are high in salt. Dressing your salad with oil and vinegar is the healthiest way to go.
  • Antacids may contain salt.

     

    A. Myth

     

    B. Fact

    Correct Answer
    The correct answer is fact. Some antacids and laxatives have a lot of salt in them. If you need these medicines, ask your doctor or pharmacist which contain the least amount of salt.
  • The Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet is high in:

     

    A. Fiber

     

    B. Potassium

     

    C. Calcium

     

    D. Magnesium

     

    E. All of the above

    Correct Answer
    The correct answer is all of the above. Besides being rich in these nutrients, the DASH diet has much less salt and saturated fats than the typical American diet. This diet can lower blood pressure, sometimes within weeks. Check with your doctor to learn if DASH is a good choice for you.