Keep Your Heart Happy with These Three Tips

Posted September 2021
cottage cheese, blueberries, walnuts, cinnamon on Corn Thins slices

Have you considered how much sodium is in your diet? Sodium is a mineral which plays many important roles such as maintaining the fluid volume outside your cells. However, when there is too much sodium in your diet this can play havoc on your heart health. Excess sodium increases your blood pressure which puts added pressure onto your heart which can increase your risk of a heart attack. High blood pressure can also increase your risk of stroke and chronic kidney disease.

The average sodium intake for Australians is 3600mg/day. To put this into perspective, the suggested dietary target is 2,000 mg/day so you are not alone if you have too much of this mineral in your diet. Here are three ways you can keep sodium at a healthy level:


  1. Read Food Labels

Most sodium in your diet comes from pre-packaged products which is why it is important to read food labels. Seek foods and beverages with less than 120mg/100g for a gold star level of sodium or a silver at less than 400mg/100g.


  1. Include Potassium Each Meal and Snack

Potassium has the opposite effect to sodium and helps to lower your blood pressure. The adequate amount of potassium needed each day for women aged 19 years and over is 2800mg while for men it is 3800mg.

Potassium can be found in a variety of foods including seafood like whole grains, or whole grain containing foods such as Corn Thins slices, legumes, seafood, dairy, fruits, and vegetable. If you do not get enough of this mineral in your diet you are at risk of kidney stones, muscle weakness and high blood pressure.

Try adding a potassium rich food or beverage in all your meals and snacks. This can include a 3 Corn Thin slices with ½ cup of cottage cheese topped with berries and cinnamon. Check out more potassium rich recipe ideas at:


  1. Lemon, Lime, Herbs and Spices

Sauces can be full of added sugar and salt. Try swapping with herbs and spices to not only remove the salt and sugar but add in antioxidants different herbs and spices will give your body.

Another good choice can be using lime and lemon juice which add antioxidants as well as vitamin C. Vitamin C is needed to keep your immune system working at its best and is needed to make the protein collagen. Collagen keeps your tendons and ligaments strong and your skin looking youthful.


Take home message: Try these three tips to keep the levels of potassium and sodium in your body at their optimal amounts.

Ashleigh Felth…
Accredited Practising Dietitian
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    • Ashleigh Felth…