Most of us know that sodium isn't great for us in large amounts. We also know that it's hard to avoid because it's in pretty much everything. So, how much sodium should we really be eating? And what are the best ways to reduce our intake? Read on to find out.

How Much Sodium is Too Much?

The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends no more than 2,300 mg of sodium per day for healthy adults. For people with high blood pressure, diabetes, or chronic kidney disease, the recommendation is even lower: no more than 1,500 mg per day. Most of us, however, consume much more than that. The average American eats about 3,400 mg of sodium per day!

There are a few factors that play into this. First, processed and restaurant foods tend to be very high in sodium. A study published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine found that 75% of the sodium Americans eat comes from these types of foods. Second, we often add salt to our food without even realizing it. A teaspoon of table salt has 2,325 mg of sodium—that's almost our entire recommended daily amount! Just a little sprinkle can add a lot of sodium to our diet.

Reducing Your Sodium Intake

Now that we know how much sodium we should be eating and where it lurks, let's talk about ways to reduce our intake. One easy way is to cook more meals at home using fresh ingredients. This way, you have complete control over how much sodium goes into your food. Another tip is to check nutrition labels and choose foods that are lower in sodium. When eating out, ask your server about menu items that are low in salt. And finally, be mindful of how much salt you're adding to your food at the table—a little goes a long way!


Sodium is something we can all stand to cut back on. Most of us eat far more than the recommended amount every day without even realizing it! By being aware of hidden sources of sodium and making small changes like cooking at home more often and adding less salt to our food, we can make a big impact on our health.

​​Want to know what is the best salt substitute? Check out our guide here!

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