Salt is an essential part of our diets. In fact, human blood is 0.9 percent sodium chloride (salt). That salt in the blood helps maintain the electrolyte balance inside and outside of cells.
While individual needs can vary, most studies indicate that the human body needs only around 500 milligrams of salt a day to maintain that healthy balance — but that 500 milligrams is a fraction of what many Americans consume in a day. So much salt is present in processed foods that consuming 1,200 to 2,000 milligrams is now often considered a salt-restricted diet.
The average American consumes 3,300 milligrams a day. The American Heart Association recommends a maximum of 2,400 milligrams a day.
To give you an idea of how much salt constitutes the recommended target milligrams a day, consider these “straight from the salt shaker” statistics:
- ¼ teaspoon salt = 500 milligrams sodium
- ½ teaspoon salt = 1,000 milligrams sodium
- ¾ teaspoon salt = 1,500 milligrams sodium
- 1 teaspoon salt = 2,000 milligrams sodium
- 1 teaspoon baking soda = 1,000 milligrams sodium
This cookbook can help curb this problem of over-consumption by offering up recipes that are low in salt but still taste delicious. They taste so good that you won't even think about reaching for that salt shaker for a few extra sprinkles!