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You probably know that Americans consume way too much salt, but a new U.S. government report points the finger at some surprising sources of salt in the diet.

The report said the top 5 culprits were:

Bread.

Pizza.

Sandwiches.

Cold cuts and cured meats.

Soup.

Surprisingly, potato chips, pretzels and other obviously salty snacks didn’t make it into the top five, though they did ring in at number 7.

“Most Americans are consuming too much salt and it’s coming from a lot of commonly consumed foods — about 25 foods contribute the majority of salt,” said lead researcher Zerleen Quader. She’s an analyst from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Knowing which foods contribute the most salt is important for reducing your salt intake, she said.

Sodium is an essential mineral that helps the body maintain fluid balance, according to the American Heart Association. But, too much in the diet increases the risk for high blood pressure, which in turn boosts the risk for heart attack and stroke. Table salt contains about 40 percent sodium. One teaspoon of table salt has 2,300 milligrams (mg) of sodium, which is the maximum amount recommended by health experts.

The new CDC report found that in 2013-2014, Americans consumed about 3,400 mg of salt daily. That far exceeds the recommended amount, and is more than double the American Heart Association’s “ideal” intake of 1,500 mg daily.

And, clearly, all that salt doesn’t come from the salt shaker. Most comes from packaged, processed and restaurant foods, the report said.

Many of these foods contain moderate amounts of salt, but are eaten all day long, Quader said. It’s not necessarily that foods such as bread are high in salt, but eating several slices a day quickly adds to the total amount of salt you consume.

One way to reduce salt is to pay attention to food labels when shopping and choose the lowest salt option, Quader suggested.

“When cooking at home, use fresh herbs and other…



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