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Over three-fourths of our salt consumption comes from sneaky sources.
From the type of cheese you buy to condiments, many foods sneak salt, sugar, and fats into your diet. Once you know about these foods, you can avoid them--and gradually lower your blood pressure. Learn about the foods that people with hypertension should avoid.
Don't Pick Pickles
Although they're tasty, pickles are the epitome of "salty food." A medium-sized pickle supplies a max of 800 mg of salt, over half of your daily recommended dose on a low-sodium diet. In 2018, a study by LiveStrong confirmed that eating pickles raises blood pressure.
As with all high-sodium foods, pickles are fine in moderation. But combined with other salty foods--deli meat sandwiches, cheeses, and hot dogs--will heighten your salt intake considerably. Salt places greater pressure on your blood vessels, which increases blood pressure. If you like pickles, restrict your serving sizes.
Condiments Are Sneaky Salt Sources
Salt sneaks into almost every condiment. For instance, ketchup supplies 160 mg of salt per tablespoon. Teriyaki sauce marinades have almost 700 mg of sodium. Soy sauce is the worst: 1,500 mg of salt per one tablespoon! And many people glaze more than one tablespoon on their meals.
The American Heart Association recommends finding low-sodium alternatives. You can make your own hot sauce, BBQ sauce, and ketchup at home. For salad dressings, hunt down a fat-free or "light" version. And always remember to measure out your portions.