Seasoned Salt: Good Or Bad (And What To Use Instead)
I grew up with seasoning salt. The popular spice blend was a staple in many kitchens around the country. It added that little extra “umph” to your dishes and seemed to make them taste better.
But that’s not all it did.
If you’re using seasoning salt regularly, chances are you are getting more than the recommended amount of sodium too. Although your body needs some salt, too much salt is linked with high blood pressure, which in turn ups your risk of heart disease and stroke.
Seasoning salt is also sometimes called seasoned salt. The main ingredient of this commercial product is salt but it also includes a blend of spices and herbs. These usually include onions, pepper, garlic and paprika. It’s commonly used to enhance the flavor of foods, especially meat and poultry, as well as French fries and some side dishes.
Lawry’s Seasoned Salt and Morton Seasoned Salt are among the many popular brands of seasoning salt. It seemed like in just about every Black person’s home I went to, they had at least one or both. Each contains comparable amounts of sodium (not to mention other Trans Fat ingredients). For example, Lawry’s has 380 mg of sodium in a single serving. Morton has 350 mg per serving and Badia seasoning salt has 380 mg. Some of the salt-makers produce a lower-sodium version of their regular seasoning salt.
And what size is a serving size? Only 1/4 teaspoon! That’s it. That’s literally a pinch of salt, but we all know many us usually use at least a full teaspoon or more.
It’s no secret Americans consume too much salt and therefore get way more sodium than is necessary — or healthy. You do need some. The Institute of Medicine recommends 2,300 mg daily for most healthy Americans, but only 1,500 for those with health issues such as hypertension and diabetes. The average American gets about 3,400 mg daily, reports Harvard University’s School of Public Health.
What To Do? Make Your Own!
You can reduce your intake of sodium by reducing your portion sizes, try some of the lower-sodium brand options, and stop relying on commercial products to get your seasoning salt and just make your own! Here’s how: