Sodium tips

Be aware, that foods labeled "heart healthy" may not be low in sodium. Always check the nutrition label.

Limit sodium to 1,500 to 2,000 milligrams (mg) each day.

A good amount of sodium per serving is 140 mg or less.

Limit only one food a day with more than 400 mg of sodium per serving.

Why you need to control sodium (salt)

Eating a healthful diet is an important part of managing heart failure. When you eat foods low in sodium, your heart won't have to work as hard to pump blood.

One teaspoon of salt contains 2,400 milligrams (mg) of sodium. Limit sodium to 1,500 to 2,000 milligrams (mg) each day.

If you take medicine for high blood pressure, a low-sodium diet may help the medicine to work better.

How to deal with salt cravings

A craving for salt is not your body's way of telling you that you are low on salt. It is a learned response. The craving for salt is learned so it can be unlearned.

Related resources

Source: Allina Health's Patient Education Department, Heart Failure, fifth edition, 1-931876-31-2
First Published: 10/04/2002
Last Reviewed: 12/10/2015