People 51 and older should consume no more than 1,500 milligrams of sodium a day, according to federal government guidelines. (Just one teaspoon of salt contains 2,325 milligrams of sodium.) Fortunately, it's easy to forgo salty-tasting snacks such as that 1-ounce bag of potato chips (180 mg of sodium) or 1-ounce bag of pretzels (200 mg). Unfortunately, it's the not-so-salty-tasting foods that may be the problem.

A new report from the Centers for Disease Control says bread is the top source of sodium in the American diet. In fact, a large plain bagel could have as much as 580 mg of sodium -- that's 39 percent of the daily recommended intake for people 51 and older. Even a 1-ounce slice of white or whole-wheat bread contains as much as 230 mg of sodium. A cheeseburger from a fast-food restaurant can blow your suggested allotment for the entire day.

For more information on how salt and sodium turn up where you might not expect it, even in healthy foods such as cottage cheese, download the CDC's "Where's the Sodium?" booklet at


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