Is Fruit a Hidden Source of Sodium?
Should you reduce the amount of melon you're eating to avoid sodium? Get the full scoop from Nutrition Diva.
Q. I try to limit my sodium intake to about 2,500 mg a day. Recently, I looked up the nutrition information for cantaloupe and discovered it contains over 400mg of sodium in a 16 oz. serving! Should I reduce the amount of melon I’m eating to avoid the excess sodium?
A. I wonder if you might be using a diet tracking app, such as Lose it! or My Fitness Pal to look up nutrition info? These programs can be tremendously useful and most have huge databases of foods. Just keep in mind that most of this information is entered by other users, and often contains errors. The amount of sodium in 16 ounces of cantaloupe, for example, is only about 70 mg. You can double-check suspicious items (such as improbably salty melon) by checking a verified source, such as the USDA Food Composition Database.
Although I’m not concerned about the sodium in your cantaloupe, I should also point out that a 16-ounce serving of melon is actually more like four servings of fruit. Fruit is a wonderful source of nutrition—and a great alternative to sugary snacks—but it does also contain a fair amount of naturally occurring sugar. I generally recommend limiting fruit to 2-4 servings a day (more if you’re extremely active).
Cantaloupe melon from Shutterstock