Monday, March 1, 2010

Low Sodium Options for a Gluten Free Diet

Do you know how much sodium is in your gluten free diet? I have found that we sometimes focus so hard on the "gluten free" aspect of our diet that we can forget the other components that contribute to healthy eating. March is National Nutrition Month and I hope to have several posts this month focused on nutrition as it relates to the gluten free diet. The current dietary guidelines recommend individuals consume less than 2300mg of sodium per day. These guidelines are revised every 5 years, so 2010 will offer some updated guidelines. The American Heart Association is now recommending that individuals consume no more that 1500 mg of sodium per day. Note one teaspoon of salt contains 2400mg of sodium! Just 14 tortilla corn chips provide 150 mg of sodium to one's diet. Sodium is added to many processed foods, soups, frozen meals, and deli meats. One of the most significant sources of sodium is the salt shaker.The Chicago Tribune published a timely article on what some food companies are doing to limit excess sodium in foods. Read the article here. Reducing sodium intake can lead to improved blood pressure, decrease fluid retention and decrease risk for heart disease.

Durham offers a valuable resource to those looking to buy low sodium foods. The Rice Diet Program, the famous weight loss center located on Cole Mill Road includes the Rice Diet Store. This store is open to the public weekdays from 8-12. Ira Green is the gentleman that manages the store and is very helpful in answering questions. I recently attended a panel discussion on obesity at the Rice House and was able to take a peek in the store. I was surprised to see many gluten free offerings at a reasonable price. The store's website is very well designed and it lets one click on the food item and review the ingredient list. A few of the gluten free items available include: Quinoa pasta shells for $3.25, and Notta Pasta Linguine for $4.25. To go to the Rice Store and review products click here.Do realize that the store's main focus is low sodium and not all products will be gluten free.

The Rice Diet Store
1644 Cole Mill Road
Durham,NC 27705
919-383-7276 ext 2


Wendy said...

I have to be on a low sodium and a No gluten diet and I can tell you it's difficult. There are days where it's not difficult at all, when I'm able to cook everything for myself and really "get back to my roots" so to say. But most of the time I spend hunting. Does this have gluten in it, NO? great! how much sodium is in it? Oh darn, well I can't eat that.
I'm not supposed to eat more than 1500mg per day. It's tough.

Debbie Jongkind,RD,LDN said...

Your 1500mg of sodium per day is right on target with AHA new guidelines. I agree that is low and makes food choices difficult at times. Hopefully with the new guidelines we will see a wider selection of low sodium products in the market place. The Rice Diet Store offered many low sodium sauces, seasonings, etc. You can be assured they are very low in sodium BUT check carefully for any gluten ingredients. Good Luck to you!