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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BHNRC) » Beltsville Human Nutrition Research Center » Nutrient Data Laboratory » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #317433

Research Project: USDA National Nutrient Databank for Food Composition

Location: Nutrient Data Laboratory

Title: Monitoring sodium levels in commercially processed and restaurant foods - dataset and webpages.

Author
item Ahuja, Jaspreet
item Wasswa-kintu, Shirley - University Of Maryland
item Roseland, Janet
item Haytowitz, David
item Nickle, Melissa
item Showell, Bethany
item Thomas, Robin
item Williams, Juhi
item Khan, Mona - University Of Maryland
item Somanchi, Meena - University Of Maryland
item Quynhanh, Nguyen - University Of Maryland
item Exler, Jacob - University Of Maryland
item Pehrsson, Pamela

Submitted to: Government Publication/Report
Publication Type: Government Publication
Publication Acceptance Date: 5/29/2015
Publication Date: 5/29/2014
Citation: Ahuja, J.K., Wasswa-Kintu, S., Roseland, J.M., Haytowitz, D.B., Nickle, M.S., Showell, B.A., Thomas, R.G., Williams, J.R., Khan, M., Somanchi, M., Quynhanh, N., Exler, J., Pehrsson, P.R. 2014. Monitoring sodium levels in commercially processed and restaurant foods - dataset and webpages.. Government Publication/Report. www.ars.usda.gov/Services/docs.htm?docid+22861.

Interpretive Summary: Most sodium in the U.S. diet comes from commercially processed and restaurant foods. Sodium reduction in these foods is key to several recent public health efforts. The sodium levels in these foods need to be monitored to track current public health efforts and to plan new strategies to lower the amount of sodium that Americans get from food. U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) in collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has been monitoring commercially processed and restaurant foods in the United States since 2010. This monitoring program includes tracking sodium and related nutrient levels of ~1,200 commercially processed and restaurant foods. Related nutrients (potassium, total dietary fiber, total and saturated fat, total sugar) are monitored because their levels may change when manufacturers and restaurants reformulate their products to reduce their sodium content. A dataset tracking sodium and related nutrients is now available on the web for use by researchers, dietitians, epidemiologists, and food manufacturers at http://www.ars.usda.gov/nutrientdata. It will be updated annually along with the USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference. Implementation of the monitoring program and release of sodium values on the internet will improve tracking of sodium reduction efforts and help public health officials plan future strategies.

Technical Abstract: Nutrient Data Laboratory (NDL), Agriculture Research Service (ARS) in collaboration with Food Surveys Research Group, ARS, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has been monitoring commercially processed and restaurant foods in the United States since 2010. About 125 highly consumed, sodium-contributing foods, termed “Sentinel Foods” are tracked at periodic intervals by nationwide sampling and laboratory analyses. In addition, over 1,100 other commercially processed and restaurant foods with added sodium, termed “Priority-2 Foods” are tracked every two years using information obtained from food manufacturers. The Sentinel Foods and Priority-2 Foods serve as indicators for assessing changes over time in the sodium content of commercially processed and restaurant foods in the United States. All Sentinel Foods were sampled and analyzed and all Priority-2 Foods were reviewed in 2010-2013 for sodium and related nutrients (potassium, total and saturated fat, total sugar and total dietary fiber). Related nutrients are monitored because their levels may change when manufacturers and restaurants reformulate their products to reduce their sodium content. A dataset tracking sodium and related nutrients is now available on NDL’s website at http://www.ars.usda.gov/nutrientdata. It will be updated annually along with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference. Brief descriptions of the methods used are included on the website. Information on trends will be added as the monitoring program continues. The release of sodium monitoring dataset and web pages will provide public health officials, researchers, dietitians, epidemiologists, and food manufacturers an easy access to the results from the inter-agency sodium monitoring program.