Why Are We Addicted to Salt? | Prepared Home Delivered Meals
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Why Are We Addicted to Salt?

Salt – it makes your food so much more flavorful, but we also know that it's not necessarily good for us. In small pinches, salt is important for the body, because it is an electrolyte that helps balance fluids in the body. The problem is that salt also has a major impact on our heart and kidneys. Too much sodium makes it harder for the kidneys to eliminate the excess sodium, which may lead to an increase in blood volume. This can contribute to raising blood pressure to a dangerous degree.

Salt has been a major influence on our diet since man first discovered that salting food can help preserve it for later consumption. Early cultures used salt to help desiccate foods. Salting was common and even culinary by choosing raw salts from different sources (rock salt, sea salt, spiced salt, etc.). In the 1800’s it was discovered that certain sources of salt gave meat a red color instead of the usual unappetizing gray. Consumers overwhelmingly preferred the red colored meat, and salting our food became commonplace.

Not only does salting food preserve its color, but it has a direct affect on out brain chemistry. Consuming salt triggers the release of dopamine, the neurotransmitter associated with the brain's pleasure center, making salty foods as addictive as nicotine and alcohol. Therefore, as with any addiction, eating salty foods makes you crave more. It quite literally is addicting.

But that's not the only reason saltiness is so hard to resist! Another reason may be calcium deficiency. Sodium temporarily increases calcium levels in the blood, tricking the body into thinking it's been given calcium. But the more sodium consumed, the more calcium excreted, resulting in extra salt and not enough calcium.

The daily recommended amount of salt is roughly 1 teaspoon full (or 2300mg of sodium). But on average we consume almost 3400mg daily! And the majority of that amount comes from processed foods. So how can you consume less salt in your diet? Try these tips:

1. Avoid foods with visible salt including pretzels, chips and salted nuts.
2. Watch out for condiments including soy sauce, salad dressings, sauces, dips, ketchup, mustard and relish, all of which are high in sodium.
3. Avoid luncheon meat, bacon, hot dogs, sausage and ham.
4. When shopping, look for products that give you less than 200 mg of sodium per serving, and note the serving size and number of servings in the package.
5. And the #1 way to decrease sodium in your diet? Eat unprocessed foods! Since excess sodium is so often found in processed foods, make sure you're eating plenty of freshly prepared foods and especially veggies, as well as choosing freshly prepared lean meats over processed lunch meats.

Keeping track of your food and it's preparation can seem overwhelming at times, which is why we make your life easier with freshly prepared, HEALTHY meals. Our
reduced sodium meal package provides meals that contain fewer than 500mg of sodium. Making it super easy to control your sodium intake and stay within either your doctors or the national dietary guidelines. Drop by our site today to start your journey to better health through food!

Fill you and your parents' kitchen with locally made Top Chef Meals and easily eat
fresh and healthy cuisine without compromise or commitment.

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We guarantee the quality of our products and their delivery in good condition. Because we produce a perishable product, we cannot accept returned food items. We will promptly either replace or credit your Top Chef Meals account for any meals that are damaged, spoiled, or otherwise inedible as a direct result of shipping or delivery.  

We cannot guarantee meals that are unacceptable because of taste preferences or over cooking by consumers.

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We ship via FedEx to all of the lower 48 states of the US.

Your first shipment to any areas that are served by 3 day or less are shipped free as long as you FIRST create an account and order at least $75 after any discounts. Shipping costs for these zones after the first order are as follows:

Orders less that $110 at $19.95 per box.
Order at least $110 worth and receive 50% off shipping ($9.95) per box up to 21 meals. More than 21 meals require a 2nd shipping box.
Order exactly 21 meals (no other items allowed) and receive FREE Shipping

Western states shipping costs for zone 4, and 3 day select air service shipments can be found HERE.

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