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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: WHAT WE EAT IN AMERICA - DIETARY SURVEY: DATA COLLECTION, INTERPRETATION, DISSEMINATION, AND METHODOLOGY

Location: Food Surveys

Title: Sodium intake of the U.S. population: What We Eat In America, NHANES 2007-2008

Authors
item Hoy, M Katherine
item Goldman, Joseph
item Murayi, Theophile
item Rhodes, Donna
item Moshfegh, Alanna

Submitted to: Worldwide Web Site: Food Surveys Research Group
Publication Type: Review Article
Publication Acceptance Date: October 7, 2011
Publication Date: October 11, 2011
Repository URL: http://www.ars.usda.gov/Services/docs.htm?docid=19476
Citation: Hoy, M.K., Goldman, J.D., Murayi, T., Rhodes, D.G., Moshfegh, A.J. 2011. Sodium intake of the U.S. population: What We Eat In America, NHANES 2007-2008. Worldwide Web Site: Food Surveys Research Group. Available: www.ars.usda.gov/Services/docs.htm?docid=19476.

Interpretive Summary: There is a strong link between sodium intake and risk for hypertension in adults, with emerging evidence that suggests a similar relationship in children. Using nationwide data on dietary intakes from What We Eat In America, NHANES 2007-2008, we report sodium intake of the U.S. population by gender and age, and in relation to current intake recommendations as set forth in the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. We also discuss food categories that contribute to total sodium intake. "Sodium Intake of the U.S. Population" is available on the Food Surveys Research Group Web site at www.ars.usda.gov/ba/bhnrc/fsrg. Data show that the average sodium intake of the population is 3,330 mg per day, and intakes have remained relatively unchanged since the 1994-1998 Continuing Survey of Food Intakes by Individuals. Sodium intake is related to calorie intake, thus males have higher intakes than females due to their higher energy intakes. When sodium per 1,000 kilocalories is considered, intakes are comparable between males and females. Food categories that contribute to sodium intake include mixed dishes with grains, meats, sauces, vegetables, etc., and meats, poultry, fish and eggs and egg dishes, with deli/cured meats contributing about half to that category. The information in this report is informative for health professionals, educators, and others who are interested in the dietary intake of the U.S. population. It is also useful to those who are developing education programs and policy initiatives to lower sodium intake, and for monitoring changes in sodium intake within the population at large.

Technical Abstract: The purpose of this report is to present data on the sodium intake of the U.S. population and the food categories that contribute to total intake. The dietary intake data was from a twenty-four hour recall provided by 8,529 individuals ages two and older who participated in What We Eat In America, NHANES 2007-2008. The analysis of the contribution of food categories to total sodium intake used dietary intake data provided by all study participants in NHANES 2007-2008 except breastfed children. Data show that in 2007-2008, the average sodium intake of the U.S. population age two years and older was 3,330 mg per day, and intakes have remained relatively unchanged since the 1994-1998 Continuing Survey of Food Intakes by Individuals. Sodium intake is related to calorie intake, thus males have higher intakes than females due to their higher energy intakes. When sodium per 1,000 kcal is considered, intakes across gender and age groups are similar. Overall, 31% of adults consumed less than 2,300 mg sodium on the reporting day as recommended in the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Twenty-three percent of sodium intake was accounted for by intake of mixed dishes with meat, poultry, fish, grains, vegetables etc., and 19% was contributed by meats, poultry, fish, and eggs and egg dishes, of which deli/cured meats contributed 9%. Breads and grain products provided 14% of sodium intake.

Last Modified: 10/1/2014