the Olympia School District logo, a line drawing of the capitol dome with the Letters O, S, and D at the base


School District

1113 Legion Way SE
Olympia, WA 98501
Office: (360) 596-6100

Let’s talk about sodium....

Did you know that you should limit your sodium intake to 1,500 mg a day?  You did?  Great!  But did you know that the average American age 2 and older consumes more than TWICE that amount? 

It’s easy to get too much sodium when we are used to eating packaged foods items, snacks and meals that contain loads of sodium. 

While a small amount of sodium is good for us, too much can put us at risk for high blood pressure, heart disease and stroke. 

That’s why it’s important to eat a VARIETY of foods instead of the same foods everyday that have high sodium! 

An example

The chicken patty sandwich at school has 859 mg of sodium.  Eat that with a serving of potato wedges, which has 290 mg of sodium and you have eaten almost 1200 mg of sodium in just ONE meal.

It’s perfectly fine to eat a chicken patty sandwich with fries but you should make it a “once-in-awhile” meal choice instead of eating it everyday. 

Since your total daily intake of sodium should be 1,500 mg or less, strive for around 500 mg or less of sodium at lunch.  You can do this by eating more delicious vegetables, salad and fruit!

See what’s on your lunch menu for the day and then look on the school district’s website for the sodium content and other important nutrition information. 

Remember if you make good food choices while you are young, you will help your body grow well so that you can be strong and healthy throughout your life!

A few tips to reducing your sodium

  • Eat more whole fruits and vegetables, nuts, legumes, whole grains and lean protein like fish, poultry and lean beef! 
  • Don’t add extra salt at mealtime.  Take that salt shaker off the table and hide it in your food cabinet!
  • Drink plenty of water all day long to stay hydrated and flush excess sodium from your body!
  • Read labels on packaged foods!  If you are trying to stay under 1,500 mg of sodium PER DAY, try to eat less of those packaged foods and more healthy whole foods!