Tag Archive | "sodium"

How to Read Labels for Sodium and Fiber Content

If you want to stick to your normal weight and be healthy, then you should know how to read the labels of the food that you eat. Sadly most of us just eat whatever is available without bothering on what are the components of the food we eat and how many calories are we going to get from eating these foods. Not reading labels is not a good thing to do especially if we want to have a healthy weight and to be away from diseases. Everything that we put inside our mouths greatly affects the kind of health that we have.

The first step in eating healthy is by being informed on what you put on your mouth. It is a must to read labels so that you will be able to measure the amount of food you are going to eat and the calories of the food you are going to eat. In this way you know when to eat less or eat more basing on your nutritional requirements.

One of the most common nutrients that we always eat at day to day basis is sodium and fiber. Both of these nutrients are essential in keeping leading a good health and preventing the occurrence of diseases.  It is important to know how much of these nutrients are we eating so that we know if we are healthily getting the nutrients that we ought to get or are we eating too much of them that it can cause harm to our health.


Sodium is very essential in the absorption of fluids in the body. However, taking too much of it can cause the occurrence of medical conditions like hypertension and kidney failure. We must all know that we should only limit our intake of sodium to 2, 300 mg every day. Having greater sodium intake from the required intake and eating way too low than what is recommended are all hazardous to the health.


Fiber is very important in maintaining a healthy weight and for proper digestion of the body. It also reduces the risk of someone to have heart attacks and certain cancers. We can find fiber in fruits and vegetables that has been the favorite food among dieters all over the globe. It is recommended that our daily intake of fiber should be 25grams to 30 grams. But, a lot of experts suggest that we should not limit our intake of fiber enriched foods especially if you want to lose weight.

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Tips in Preventing Kidney Stones

Having kidney stones is one of the most painful conditions that a person can have. Sad to say, an estimate of 3 million see their doctors to be diagnosed to having kidney stones. Kidney stones are either formed when a person passes out lesser urine or when there are many mineral deposits that are present on the urine. Minerals like calcium, phosphate, and urate form stones that can grow as big as 5mm.

It is very important to prevent the occurrence of kidney stones before it can affect the entire urinary system which is very important in cleansing the body from harmful elements. Especially for those who have a family history of the condition and those who were affected with kidney stones before then it is time to live a healthy lifestyle to prevent from having kidney stones. Here are some of the ways:

  • Drink more than 8 glasses of water daily. These will help flush away those crystalloids that start to form in the urinary tract. Some of the stones especially those who are just very small are just flushed away during urination.
  • Limit intake of red meats like beef and pork. They can increase chances of getting kidney stones.
  • Limit eating foods that are too salty like anchovies, pickles, and other processed meats. These foods contain too much sodium that can be the reason for kidney stones formation.
  • Control your intake of dairy products and never take calcium supplements without advice from the doctor on the right dosage. Calcium too can lead to kidney stone formation when taken in high quantities.
  • When you already have problems with kidney stones or you have family history of kidney stones, it is best to limit your intake of green leafy vegetables, liver, berries, and chocolates. These foods are sources of calcium that can also form calcium oxalate stones.
  • Try drinking fresh produced lemons. Squeeze the lemon and mix the juice with water. Drinking fresh lemon juice daily helps get rid of kidney stones because it contains citrate that busts kidney stones off.
  • Exercise! It helps get rid of the body’s toxins released thru sweat making less burden to the kidneys.

If you are feeling stabbing pain at your lower back that is usually accompanied by having a hard time urinating, then it is time to see your doctor for a thorough check. You may need more advanced treatments like taking of medications to dissolve the stones affecting your kidneys.

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How to Know If the Food You’re Buying is Really Low Fat?

Almost every product available out in the market today has its fat-free or low-fat version. But what do we really know about low-fat? What does it mean if it says low-fat? Many research studies reveal that a low fat diet is healthy and can help in preventing heart disease such as coronary artery diseases that leads to heart attack and stroke.

Fat is an essential part of our body along with protein and carbohydrates. Essential fatty acids are derived from fat in the food that we eat. These essential fatty acids are important in body functions like clotting, immune response and brain development. Fat also functions as a reserve for the body if it needs extra calories to be burned from continuous activity. Though fat deposits are generally not pretty to look at especially in the mid section of our abdomen and thighs it serves a significant purpose of insulating the body against cold environment. Fat also helps in maintaining a healthy glowing skin and a smooth flowing hair.

The bad effects of fat mainly come from the saturated kind. Saturated fats such as those found in dairy products, meat and plant sources can cause accumulation of fat deposits in the blood vessels that can produce blockage and puts an individual at high risk for heart attacks or stroke. It is a good thing that most people nowadays are aware of the undesirable effects of saturated fats and are slowly switching to healthier options. Since fat cannot be eliminated entirely in the diet for its nutritional value and also for the distinct taste and flavor it brings to our food, we do have the option to take control of how much fat we can take. Buying low fat versions of milk, cheese, and other dairy products can give you positive benefits in the long run.

To distinguish if the foods we buy are really low fat we need to be familiar with the terms used for their classification.

Calorie free Has less than 5 calories per serving
Fat free Has less than 0.5 grams of fat per serving
Lite Has only 1/3 fewer calories or no more than half of the fat of the original product
Low Fat Has only 3 grams of fat or lower
Low saturated fat Contains 1 gram of saturated fat or less


Something that says “lite” does not necessarily mean it’s healthy; it just contains fewer calories than the normal serving. It is important to read the nutritional facts label before believing what the front package says. Most of these low fat versions are packaged foods and normally contains a generous amount of sugar and sodium as preservatives. These can be misleading since consumers are made to believe that they are consuming less calories because of the low fat content but in reality the sodium and sugar substitutes are equally the same.

Eating foods that are low in fat will yield promising results if taken in moderation and coupled with regular exercise. Essential fats and good cholesterol can be found in sources like nuts, olive oil and fish.

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Top Sodium Rich Foods That You Should Avoid

Sodium or commonly known as salt is used to add flavor and taste to foods. It is normally needed by the body to maintain blood pressure, muscle and nerve function. It naturally occurs in foods that we eat perhaps the most common is the “table salt” used as condiment in restaurants and at home. Milk and celery naturally contains sodium and even our drinking water.

Some sodium is added to foods to act as preservatives. These can be found in bacon, ham, canned soups, and other processed meats. Like many of the elements found in nature too much of it can lead to harmful effects. A diet high in sodium could lead to various diseases affecting organs like the heart and kidneys. A healthy person should only take up to 2,300 mg of sodium daily. For those who already have history of heart and kidney disease the threshold for sodium should be lower than 1,500 mg a day.

As parents we need to be aware that too much sodium can produce harmful effects and that we should monitor sodium content we serve our children and families. Here is a list of the top sodium rich foods we need to limit or avoid.

  1. Fast Foods – are very rich in sodium, examples are pizza, cheeseburgers, fries, nuggets and chips.
  2. Junk foods – potato chips, corn chips, pretzels, and some crackers are heavily laden with salt and flavorings that are rich in sodium
  3. Canned foods – sodium is the main ingredient used to preserve and prolong the shelf like of these canned foods.
  4. Condiments and flavorings – table salt, soy sauce and fish sauces are just a few of the condiments easily available to add to prepared meals. Some people use these condiments because they enhance the taste and flavor of the meals.
  5. Breads and breakfast cereals – when bread is baked sodium is added and same goes with cereals and other breakfast items
  6. Butter, margarine and mayonnaise – these contains around 140 mg of sodium in one table spoon serving
  7. Dairy products – some of our favorites like cheese, and milk shakes contains sodium as well

Limiting intake of these sodium rich foods will help in maintaining a normal blood pressure. Less sodium in the diet also lessens the risk for development of kidney stones that can damage the kidneys, an important organ of the body tasked to eliminate toxins and wastes. Discipline in avoiding junk foods in children will need to established as early as possible as the potential damage to the kidneys are irreversible not like damage to any organs that can heal and repair itself. Additionally people at risk for coronary artery disease should avoid sodium as well for this will only aggravate their disease by raising the blood pressure which can cause congestive heart failure. When preparing foods try not put salt on the table as this will encourage adding more sodium to prepared foods which naturally has sodium in it already.

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