Maintaining a low sodium diet has a multitude of benefits. Sodium inhibits your body’s ability to absorb calcium and other essential nutrients. If you do not watch you sodium intake, severe medical consequences can occur. You can develop syndromes like osteoporosis, obesity, high blood pressure, kidney disorders, as well as heart disease. To reduce your risks of these diseases, you should keep your daily intake of sodium to less than 2,000 milligrams. Most of your food choices should not contain more than 150 milligrams sodium in each serving.
Keep this in mind when you choose your snack items. Read the food labels to make sure they do not contain hidden sodium. The following are five deliciously healthy snack ideas that you can include in your low sodium diet.
Fresh, in-season fruits make wonderful snacks. They are sweet, juicy and full of fiber and essential nutrients. The one item missing in fruits is sodium. Most fruits have zero sodium. Those that do contain sodium, rarely exceed 5 milligrams per serving. Having a fruit in between your meals is the healthiest way to satisfy your sugar craving and keep your body energized.
Yogurt is a superfood for health maintenance. Having a yogurt everyday keeps your microflora balanced, regulates your bowels, lowers your blood pressure and strengthens your immunity. Yogurt is also very nutritious with essential proteins, vitamins and minerals. It is especially a great source of calcium and vitamin D. Yogurt is a low-sodium food. On average, an 8-ounce serving of yogurt has only about 75 or 80 milligrams of sodium.
3. Unsalted or Sea Salted Roasted Nuts
Nuts like almonds, hazelnuts, pistachios and pecans contain highly valuable monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids that can help lower your blood cholesterol. They are also rich in phytonutrients and antioxidants that reduce your risk of cancer and other diseases. A small handful of dry roasted nuts makes a super rich snack and delivers a healthy boost of energy. Make sure to select the package that is labeled with “no added salt” or “unsalted.” Snacking on these nuts saves you about 500 milligrams of sodium intake per serving.
4. Preserved Fruits
Preserved fruits like raisins and dried apricots are not as nutritious as fresh fruits. They are much higher in sugar content, and if you don’t watch your serving size, you can rack up calories fast. However, having a small handful of preserved fruits can be a great low-sodium snacking idea. They give you an extra dose of fiber, vitamins A and C, calcium and iron with less than 10 milligrams of sodium. You can eat them as they are or use them to sweeten up your yogurt.
5. “No Sugar Added” or “Fat Free” Chocolate Pudding
“No sugar added” or “fat free” pudding is a dieter’s ice cream sundae. It is sweet with a creamy texture, and it feels luxurious in your mouth. Because they are usually made from skim milk, puddings are nutritious. Chocolate puddings work especially well because cocoa has extra loads of antioxidants and minerals which are not found in other flavors. Chocolate puddings are also low in sodium with no more than 75 milligrams per serving.