The Truth About Salt In Your Food

It's everywhere. And we're supposed to eat less of it. By: Sidney Fry, MS, RD

Why some salt labels don't tell the whole story.
Photo: Randy Mayor

Why some salt labels don't tell the whole story.

Food labels generally tell you what's in the package, not what will be in the food after cooking. Here's a dramatic example of what that can mean for the home cook.

Soba noodle labels list as much as 900mg sodium per serving—which has limited our use of it. But when we boiled five brands of soba, they lost an average of 80% of their sodium, down to about 80mg per serving. The FDA only requires labels to list the nutritional properties of foods as packaged. Food makers may voluntarily present "as prepared" information, but that's an extra step, and calculation, for them. Most foods used in cooking are rarely consumed as packaged—like soba noodles.

Bottom line: Always consider the ingredients added and methods used in preparing foods.

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