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few foods, salt reduction does not need to result in inadequate intakes of macronutrients and micronutrients (Korhonen et al., 2000).

Table 6-10 shows a one day menu of 2,200 kcal and its resulting sodium content. This intake level of 2,200 kcal/day is the median intake of adult men and women from the Continuing Survey of Food Intake of Individuals (CSFII), taken in 1994–1996 and 1998 (IOM, 2002). This table illustrates that sodium intake at levels between the AI of 1.5 g (65 mmol)/day and the Tolerable Upper Intake Level (UL) for adults of 2.3 g (100 mmol)/day (see next section, “Adverse Results of Overconsumption”) can be achieved by eating a variety of foods and consuming a diet that provides recommended levels of vitamins and mineral elements, as well as recommended amounts of protein, fiber, carbohydrate, and polyunsaturated fatty acids.


Based on self-reported intake data in the United States from the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES III, 1988–1994) (Appendix Table D-8), the estimated median intake of sodium from foods (not including salt added at the table) varied by age group and ranged from 3.1 to 4.7 g (135 to 204 mmol)/day for men and 2.3 to 3.1 g (100 to 135 mmol)/day for women in the United States. These intake ranges are equivalent to 7.8 to 11.8 g/day of sodium chloride for men and 5.8 to 7.8 g/day of sodium chloride for women. The estimated dietary sodium intakes of both white and African American men and women in the United States were similar (Appendix Tables D-9 and D-10). Median intakes for sodium based on survey data on usual intakes of sodium for ten provinces in Canada in 1990–1999 (Appendix Table F-3) ranged from 2.8 to 3.8 g (122 to 165 mmol)/day for men and 2.0 and 2.5 g (87 to 109 mmol)/day for women. These intake ranges are equivalent to 7.1 to 9.7 g/day of sodium chloride for men and 5.1 to 6.4 g/day for women.

It should be emphasized that these estimates of self-reported sodium intake do not include salt added at the table and thus underestimate sodium intake for many individuals. In contrast to the NHANES and Health Canada data sets, other studies have estimated total sodium intake (including table salt) from urinary sodium excretion. Recent (1997–1999) population-based estimates of sodium intake in the United States derived from 24-hour urine collections documented median urinary sodium excretion for those aged 40 to

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