About our Sodium Reduction Initiative
The vast majority of people in the United States consume more than the recommended daily amount of sodium—often without even knowing it. Most of the sodium in our diets comes from the pervasive packaged and processed foods circulating in the U.S. food system, including the food we consume in settings like restaurants and hospitals.
All of the sodium in our food inevitably manifests as the leading causes of death in the United States—heart disease and stroke, associated with elevated blood pressure.
By cutting the salt, food service and the food industry can work with public health to encourage healthy communities. NNPHI is working with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Division of Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention and our member institute Health Resources in Action to do just that.
In support of sodium reduction strategies, NNPHI works with CDC to provide technical assistance and training for state and local awardees working to reduce sodium in food service settings through the Sodium Reduction in Communities Program (SRCP). So far, we have:
- Established a learning community with national public health partners, food industry experts, public health practitioners from SRCP awardees
- Hosted a national web forum series with over 1,400 participants
- Hosted networking calls with SRCP awardees to support sharing of best practices and peer learning
- Organized a two-day in-person training for SRCP awardees featuring chefs, cooks, and administrators from multiple food service operations
- Created and disseminated Sodium Reduction Tip Sheets to an estimated audience of 34,000
- Produced a series of instructional videos about simple culinary strategies and techniques to reduce sodium in food service settings.
Training Videos for Food Service Professionals
NNPHI collaborated with The Culinary Institute of America to produce short, instructional videos on simple culinary strategies and techniques to reduce sodium in food service settings.
The University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) is one of eight communities funded through CDC’s Sodium Reduction in Communities Program (SRCP). During the first year of the SRCP project, UAMS has focused on building university partnerships to facilitate learning opportunities for congregate meal partners. In response to partner requests for assistance on lowering sodium in donated and bulk food items, UAMS organized a training to demonstrate how to make sauces and dressings that add flavor to foods without adding sodium. This Web Forum highlights the successes and lessons learned from UAMS’ experiences building partnerships, providing technical assistance, and coordinating trainings to reduce sodium. More »
This video demonstrates culinary techniques to prepare delicious, lower sodium salad dressings using fresh ingredients. Chefs from The Culinary Institute of America prepare a lower sodium version of an everyday basic vinaigrette as well as lower sodium versions of regular, ready to use/commercially available dressings by incorporating fresh ingredients for flavor and versatility. More »
This video explores cooking and seasoning techniques that enhance the flavor of dishes without the sodium. Chefs from The Culinary Institute of America discuss how incorporating fresh ingredients, such as herbs, spices, and condiments, and applying different cooking methods, such as caramelizing, grilling, and deglazing, can enhance flavor and stimulate the palate without adding excess sodium. More »
This video demonstrates culinary techniques to reduce the sodium content in tomato sauces. Chefs from The Culinary Institute of America prepare reduced sodium versions of a classic tomato sauce as well as several other tomato-based sauces using common canned tomato products, flavor enhancers and various culinary techniques. More »
This video demonstrates culinary techniques to reduce the sodium content of dishes using processed, premade, and packaged products, otherwise known as Ready to Use foods. Chefs from The Culinary Institute of America identify the sodium content of common Ready to Use foods and then demonstrates methods for decreasing the sodium in dishes using Ready to Use foods through the addition of fresh, low sodium ingredients. More »
Sodium Reduction Toolkit
NNPHI collaborated with member institute Health Resources in Action to develop a toolkit, including strategies, case studies, tools and resources, for building new and enhancing existing partnerships between public health and food service to reduce sodium in food service settings.
Since January 2015, NNPHI has collaborated with CDC, Dialogue4Health, the Culinary Institute of America and other strategic partners, to host a national web forum series featuring food industry representatives and public health practitioners who are making a difference to reduce sodium across the country.
Check out our Web Forums:
- Connecting Public Health and Food Service Operators »
- Connecting Public Health and the Food Industry »
NNPHI collaborated with the Culinary Institute of America to summarize key strategies and helpful approaches to enhance public health partnerships with food service providers.
National Salt Reduction Initiative
Led by the NYC Health Department, the National Salt Reduction Initiative is a partnership of more than 95 state and local health authorities and national health organizations working together to set voluntary targets for salt levels in 62 categories of packaged food and 25 categories of restaurant. NNPHI joined the National Salt Reduction Initiative in 2015.
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