|Scooped by Seth Bilazarian, MD|
The Soup Can Quiz; 60 seconds of nutritional teaching
For the last several months I have made it a practice to do the "Soup Can Quiz" with my congestive heart failure patients. I use the can pictured. All the patients acknowledge that they have heard that they should avoid salt, but after that the knowledge deficits rise quickly.
Patients (almost universally) tell me they don't us ANY salt.
What I hear from my older patients who need salt restriction:
1. "Can't read the label - too small"
2. "Are you promoting it for sale?:
3. "Salt isn't listed on the nutrition label"
4. "The can has a heart on it and says "healthy" so it's ok"
5. Once prompted about sodium on the label - I ask "knowing that you are supposed to limit yourself to 2000 mg of sodium per day, how much sodium is there if you have this can of soup", I hear....
- 410 mg - I explain that it is not correct since the servings per container is 2.5 so having the can would be closer to 1000 mg for the whole can.
- some patients say - "so that means I can have 2 cans"
Getting patients to understand that the consequences of exceeding salt recommendations has more immediate consequences such as hospitalization for congestive heart failure and is different than not adhering to a diabetic diet, or strategies for weight loss because consequences for those problems are not as immediate or short term. The effort has been instructive for me and has helped move patients along the health literacy curve a little bit with the hope of reducing CHF admissions and readmissions.