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Treating Meniere’s Disease: Eating a Low-Salt Diet

A common way to combat Meniere’s is to eat less salt. Salt contains sodium, which makes your body hold excess fluid. Because Meniere’s is due to fluid buildup in the inner ear, eating less sodium may help relieve your symptoms. Your doctor can tell you how many milligrams (mg) of sodium are OK to eat each day. A common recommendation is to limit sodium to no more than 2,000 mg (the amount in about 1 teaspoon of table salt) each day.

Sliced lemons and bundle of herbs with knife on cutting board.

Tips for Eating Less Salt

  • Don’t add salt to food when you’re cooking. Season foods with flavorings such as lemon, pepper, garlic, onion, and dried herbs instead.

  • Take the salt shaker off the table. Replace it with salt-free herb mixes, spices, and salt substitutes.

  • Get a cookbook of low-salt recipes. It can give you ideas for healthy and great-tasting meals.

  • Choose low-salt snacks such as no-salt pretzels or crackers, air-popped popcorn, or low-fat frozen yogurt.

  • Avoid condiments high in sodium, such as mustard, relish, ketchup, soy sauce, and Worcestershire sauce.

  • When you eat out, ask that your food be cooked without added salt. Watch out for fast foods, which are often heavily salted.

  • Read labels before buying any food that isn’t fresh. Check the label for the milligrams of sodium in each serving. Watch out for high-sodium ingredients such as baking soda and saccharin.

  • Avoid foods that are pickled, smoked, or packed in brine or broth.

  • If you buy antacid tablets, choose a sodium-free brand.

  • Certain toothpastes, mouthwashes, and medications may have salt added. Ask your pharmacist to recommend low-salt substitutes.

 

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