CDC: Adults consume too much salt

July 1, 2010

A majority of American adults consume more sodium than is recommended, according to a report released last week by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

On average, adults consume 3,466 milligrams of sodium daily -- more than twice the recommended limit. Fewer than 10 percent limit their intake to recommended levels.

Approximately 77 percent of dietary sodium comes from restaurant and processed foods.

The 2005 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (.pdf file) recommend adults consume no more than 2,300 milligrams of sodium daily, with blacks, middle-aged and older adults, and people with high blood pressure limiting their intake to 1,500 milligrams.

According to a number of studies, excessive sodium consumption can lead to negative health effects, including raised blood pressure, which can contribute to heart disease and stroke.