Sometimes I find when I'm focused on super healthy eating, I don't get enough sodium, which is obviously problematic.
I'm curious about tips you all have for keeping the calorie count low but also getting enough sodium...
I have this problem too. I eat mainly natural/unprocessed foods, and I rarely add salt to anything.
I think the obvious solution is to add salt to your normal foods. For example, cooked veggies, oatmeal, sliced tomatoes, etc. It doesn't really take much to reach the recommended minimum. If you don't like the taste of salty foods (I don't), you could try something like gatorade to make sure you're getting all the electrolytes you need.
Although I personally have the reverse problem, where I try to limit my sodium. My quick recommendation aside from adding salt to your current food items as mentioned above is to try products high in soy, dairy products such as milk, cheese, and yogurt have plenty of salt (I'm assuming you avoid these for the calories), processed foods, and any salted nut of your choice. Lastly, try Miso soup, 35 calories and 730mg of Sodium.
I've read somewhere that you want about 500mg of salt minimum to maintain for your body, but no more than 2300. I think I've cut out so much that I'm normally not worried about the less than part, but I think I at least get 1000 through various things.
The typical American diet contains excessive amounts of sodium. The health consequences of excessive sodium and insufficient potassium are substantial and include high blood pressure and its consequences, such as heart disease and stroke. Because early stages of blood pressure-related atherosclerotic disease begin during childhood, both children and adults should reduce their sodium. The new recommendations are: Limit sodium to less than 2,300 milligrams (mg) a day. A lower sodium level — 1,500 mg a day — is appropriate for people 51 years of age or older, and individuals of any age who are African-American or who have hypertension, diabetes or chronic kidney disease.
For a minimum, as for the maximum, it depends on a multitude of personal factors. Just to name a few, activity level and difficulty, hydration, body composition. But it seems from a quick google search that it's anywhere between 500-1000mg of sodium.
Your body needs some sodium to function properly because it:
- Helps maintain the right balance of fluids in your body
- Helps transmit nerve impulses
- Influences the contraction and relaxation of muscles
Your kidneys naturally balance the amount of sodium stored in your body for optimal health. When your sodium levels are low, your kidneys essentially hold on to the sodium. When sodium levels are high, your kidneys excrete the excess in urine. But if for some reason your kidneys can't eliminate enough sodium, the sodium starts to accumulate in your blood. Because sodium attracts and holds water, your blood volume increases. Increased blood volume makes your heart work harder to move more blood through your blood vessels, which increases pressure in your arteries.
I find that it doesn't take a lot for me to feel out of balance. I recently had all my vitamin levels checked and they seem to be good to go. I think it's mostly due to a lower sodium intake, which I just need to be conscious of.
I know gatorade is good for restoring electrolytes. Stupid question, but is vitamin water as good or not as good? I tend to prefer the taste of vitamin water, but will gladly switch is gatorade is a better option.
It's all about the amount of sodium, nothing else matters (i.e. the name/brand/color/etc). If you want to get sodium from those drinks though keep in mind the amount is very minimal. You're much better off using table salt.