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Strategies to Reduce Sodium Intake in the United States

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Reducing the intake of sodium is an important public health goal for Americans. Since the 1970s, an array of public health interventions and national dietary guidelines has sought to reduce sodium intake. However, the U.S. population still consumes more sodium than is recommended, placing individuals at risk for diseases related to elevated blood pressure.

Strategies to Reduce Sodium Intake in the United States evaluates and makes recommendations about strategies that could be implemented to reduce dietary sodium intake to levels recommended by the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. The book reviews past and ongoing efforts to reduce the sodium content of the food supply and to motivate consumers to change behavior. Based on past lessons learned, the book makes recommendations for future initiatives. It is an excellent resource for federal and state public health officials, the processed food and food service industries, health care professionals, consumer advocacy groups, and academic researchers.


Suggested Citation

Institute of Medicine. 2010. Strategies to Reduce Sodium Intake in the United States. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.

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Publication Info

506 pages |6 x 9
  • Paperback: 978-0-309-14805-4
  • Ebook: 978-0-309-15588-5

Table of Contents

skim chapter
Front Matter i-xii
Summary 1-16
1 Introduction 17-28
2 Sodium Intake Reduction: An Important But Elusive Public Health Goal 29-66
3 Taste and Flavor Roles of Sodium in Foods: A Unique Challenge to Reducing Sodium Intake 67-90
4 Preservation and Physical Property Roles of Sodium in Foods 91-118
5 Sodium Intake Estimates for 2003–2006 and Description of Dietary Sources 119-152
6 The Food Environment: Key to Formulating Strategies for Change in Sodium Intake 153-212
7 The Regulatory Framework: A Powerful and Adaptable Tool for Sodium Intake Reduction 213-234
8 Committee's Considerations and Basis for Recommendations 235-284
9 Recommended Strategies to Reduce Sodium Intake and to Monitor Their Effectiveness 285-296
10 Next Steps 297-316
Committee Member Biographical Sketches 317-324
Appendix A: Acronyms, Abbreviations, and Glossary 325-334
Appendix B: Government Initiatives and Past Recommendations of the National Academies, the World Health Organization, and Other Health Professional Organizations 335-356
Appendix C: International Efforts to Reduce Sodium Consumption 357-404
Appendix D: Salt Substitutes and Enhancers 405-408
Appendix E: Background on the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys and Data Analysis Methods 409-416
Appendix F: Sodium Intake Tables 417-442
Appendix G: National Salt Reduction Initiative Coordinated by the New York City Health Department 443-452
Appendix H: Federal Rulemaking Process 453-456
Appendix I: Nutrition Facts Panel 457-458
Appendix J: State and Local Sodium Labeling Initiatives 459-466
Appendix K: Approach to Linking Universal Product Code (UPC) Sales Data to the Nutrition Facts Panel 467-468
Appendix L: Public Information-Gathering Workshop Agenda 469-472
Index 473-494


Reducing the Sodium Intake in the United States

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