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10 Tasty Switches for Your Favorite Salty Foods

7. Bottled Salad Dressing

Bottled salad dressings can have as much as 400 milligrams of sodium per 2-tablespoon serving, depending on the flavor and brand of the dressing.

Change to: Find lower-sodium options for the salad dressing flavors you like. If there is a creamy dressing you like that is higher in sodium, dilute it a bit by adding 2 tablespoons of fat-free half-and-half, low-fat milk, or water, to 2 to 3 tablespoons of dressing. Or make your salad dressings from scratch.

8. Lunch Meats

Processed meats have salt and sodium for shelf life (or food preservation) and taste.

Packaged lunch meats, even when they look like they have just been carved, contain about 560 milligrams of sodium or more per 2-ounce serving.

Change to: Choose fresh meats like roast beef or pork tenderloin, roasted or grilled chicken, or turkey. They won’t last quite as long in your refrigerator, so just buy or make what you will need in the next 2 days.

You can also freeze individual servings of these meats for later use. Two ounces of roasted turkey without skin have about 40 milligrams of sodium, and 2 ounces of bottom round roast beef adds about 26 milligrams.

9. French Fries

Even the smallest size of fast-food french fries adds at least 250 milligrams of sodium.

Change to:

One medium-sized baked potato only has about 17 milligrams of sodium. Most of the sodium in french fries comes from salt added after the potatoes are fried.

Most of the frozen french fry products that you bake at home have at least 300 milligrams of sodium per serving as well.

You can ask a restaurant not to add salt to your fries, but this probably won’t work very well at a fast-food restaurant.

Your best option is to make french fries at home the old-fashioned way. Cut a potato into steak fries or wedges, coat it lightly with some canola oil, and bake in a 450-degree oven until golden (about 30 minutes). You decide exactly how much salt you want to sprinkle on top.

10. Fast Food Burger or Sandwich

One fast-food burger or sandwich alone can have more sodium than you should get in a whole day.

Change to: Make your own burger or chicken sandwich at home with your indoor grill. Season the burgers or skinless, boneless chicken breasts with salt-free seasonings and dress them with lower-sodium condiments such as horseradish, low-sodium ketchup, chopped onion or peppers, and mustard if you keep it to 1 teaspoon, which adds about 55 milligrams of sodium.

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Reviewed on August 20, 2014

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