If you’re like me, you worry that you’re feeding your kids too much processed junk, concerned about all the chemicals and preservatives and ingredients you can’t pronounce. I’m constantly reading labels and get that icky, guilty feeling whenever I spring for the packaged muesli bars or the technicolor Zooper Doopers. It turns out though that one of the biggest hits to our kids’ diets is the amount of sodium in their food.

Recently released Australian Health Survey data showed that 4-8 year old children had an average salt intake of 5.1g per day and 9-13 year olds 6.2g per day in contrast with the National Health and Medical Research Council‘s recommended upper limits of 3.5g and 5 grams for these age groups.

To help reduce the amount of sodium your kids eat, Health Direct Australia suggests reading labels and choosing the options with less sodium. When cooking, limit the amount of salt that you add to your foods, so your kids don’t develop a taste for super-salty fare. Feed them plenty of foods with potassium, which apparently offsets the effects of sodium, like potatoes, bananas, paw paw, tomatoes, greens and beans. Finally, know which foods are the biggest offenders. We’ve rounded up some of the most common high sodium favourites to get you started.

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