Blood Pressure Making Convenience Work

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Barbara M. Carlson, MA, RD, CDE, the director of Helwig Diabetes Center, likes to teach people how to make “convenience foods” work for them instead of against them.

• Example number one:

One cup of Campbell’s® Healthy Request® Vegetable Soup has about 700 mg of sodium in a serving. The sodium can be “diluted” by adding 1 cup of unsalted vegetables and 1 cup of unsalted broth (or 1/2 cup no-added-salt tomato sauce plus 1/2 cup water). Now 1 cup will have about 250 mg of sodium. Adding a sandwich like unsalted grilled chicken with lettuce and tomato, a glass of milk and a piece of fresh fruit would provide an entire meal with about 700 mg of sodium

• Example number two:

One cup of Rice-A-Roni® has about 1,200 mg of sodium – a half-day’s supply for most people. There is an easy way to lower the sodium and increase the amount of rice you make, which also lowers the cost for each person. Simply add 6 cups of cooked brown or white rice to the 3 cups made from the box mix; heat and add a few cups of frozen mixed vegetables for color and flavor. The amount of sodium in a serving drops down to about 300 mg a serving. The taste is improved!! Not so overly salty and the vegetables add a color and texture. There are a lot of leftovers for meals later in the week.

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