The word "salami" encompasses a range of cured, spiced sausage varieties with a firm texture. You may find mass produced types of salami at the deli meat counter, meant for use as a sandwich filling, at your local grocery store, or you may also encounter artisan salami, generally used as a savory accompaniment to cheese, mustard and crackers on charcuterie platters. Salami is not the healthiest choice you can make. It is a high-calorie food that contains high amounts of fat and sodium.
Salami contains 441 calories per 100 g serving. This amount – the equivalent of 3.5 oz. – comprises 22 percent of the allowable calories in your meal plan if you follow a 2,000-calorie daily diet. Consider eating a smaller portion of salami to decrease the number of calories you consume. Healthier options for meat would be turkey or chicken.
Fat and Cholesterol
A serving of salami has 41 g fat, an amount that uses up a significant amount of the recommended limit of 44 to 78 g of fat per day – this should comprise 20 to 35 percent of the total calories you eat. A considerable amount of the fat in salami comes from saturated fat, the type of fat that can clog your arteries and increase your risk of heart disease. The recommended limit of saturated fat per day is 15 g. If you do include the full serving of salami in your diet, carefully monitor the saturated fat in the remainder of your meal plan. The cholesterol you eat can also raise your chances of developing heart problems; the advised limit stands at 300 mg per day. One serving of salami contains 80 mg cholesterol.
Carbohydrates and Protein
Salami is not a rich source of carbohydrates. It contains 2.3 g per serving, but your meal plan requires 130 g per day to meet your nutritional needs. If you do eat salami, pair it with a healthy carbohydrate to boost your intake of carbs. One serving of salami provides 17 g protein, however, and this amount contributes a significant portion of your daily requirement of 46 to 56 g.
Including salami in your diet will provide you with a good source of vitamin B12. A serving contains 22 percent of the daily recommended intake. You will also get 12 percent of the niacin, or vitamin B3, and 11 percent of the riboflavin, also known as vitamin B2. These B vitamins present in salami play a critical role in helping your body to metabolize energy from the foods you eat.
One serving of salami contains 19 percent of the daily recommended intake of phosphorus, a mineral important for the production of DNA and RNA. A serving also provides 15 percent of the zinc your body requires daily, as well as 9 percent of the iron and 7 percent of the potassium you need.
Eat a serving of salami, and you take in 1,890 mg sodium. Even if you are perfectly healthy, this amount of sodium can be potentially dangerous, possibly elevating your blood pressure and causing water retention. You should limit your sodium to 2,300 mg per day; aim for 1,500 mg or less if you suffer from a heart problem.