Local restaurants offering healthy menu options as FDA recommends reducing sodium consumption

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The Food and Drug Administration declared the country in an “epidemic of diet-related illness.”

They now encourage restaurants and food manufacturers to reduce the amount of salt in their dishes.

At this point in time, the plan is to cut sodium consumption by 12% over the next two years, but in the long-term, the FDA says lowering sodium intake by about 40% over the course of a decade could save about 500,000 lives.

Nutritionists and public health professionals say, because these new guidelines are voluntary, they aren’t sure how impactful they may be in this goal.

A local doctor in the Quad Cities described how the desire to go out for meals could be harmful for people’s health, given the large amount of sodium in restaurants’ dishes.

“Most of the people have habits of eating more outside, and when they’re eating outside, it’s a lot of fast food,” said Dr. Ilesh Kurani. “Also, when food gets to the restaurant, it’s pre-packaged food, so supply is high in salt.”

Local restaurants in the QCA offer customers a wide variety of options, including low-sodium dishes.

The owner of Café d’ Marie in Davenport, DeAnna Walter, explains how she feels customers should be able to enter an establishment and know they are making healthy choices — without having to sacrifice taste or the dining-out experience.

“We keep evolving. We want to meet you where you are, so we always listen every day to what the people want, and we try to accommodate those needs as much as possible,” said Walter.

She added, “If the restaurant can offer the food that you can eat and not cheat all the time, I think you feel accomplished.”

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