Canned soup does not necessarily come to mind when you are looking for a healthy weight-loss alternative, given its normally high sodium content. However, Campbell’s Soup launched a 40-year effort to gradually reduce the salt content of its soups and has created its own diet plan. While many soups in Campell's product line still contain high levels of sodium, the company now offers more than 100 low-sodium choices that include not only soup, but sauces, pastas, crackers, beverages and bread.
The Campbell’s Soup Diet offers three calorie-level plans -- 1,200, 1,600 and 2,000. Women under 165 lbs. who are inactive should use the 1,200 plan. Inactive men and active women should use the 1,600 calorie plan; active men should use the 2,000 calorie plan. Consult with your doctor or nutritionist to individually develop a caloric level that best suits your individual needs.
The Campbell’s Soup Diet features a detailed 30-day 1,200 calorie per day menu guide. Each day has a different set of three meals, along with snacks. Despite the name of the diet, you don’t have to eat soup at every meal. In fact, you only eat soup for lunch. A sample day of the meal plan consists of a breakfast of cereal and melon chunks, a lunch of cheese tortellini with chicken and vegetable soup with a salad, and a dinner of skillet mac ‘n’ beef. You can add additional food options to boost the caloric intake of the meal plan to 1,600 or 2,000 calories. The Campbell’s Soup diet plan provides you with a list of these add-ons in 100-calorie increments. Choices include dairy, fruits, vegetables, starch, protein, fats or oils, snacks and beverages.
Campbell’s estimates that the nutritional breakdown of the complete diet has less than 10 percent of calories coming from saturated fat, less than 30 percent from any fat, less than 300 mg of cholesterol, 2,400 mg of sodium, at least five servings of vegetables and fruits, and whole grain. The nutritional level of the Campbell’s Soup Diet is in line with the dietary guidelines put forth by the Institutes of Health according to Campbell’s. The sodium level increases for the 2,000 diet plan.
The Campbell’s soup diet plan advocates increasing your level of physical activity to facilitate weight loss and to improve your health outcomes, like lowering hypertension and cardiovascular disease. Speak with your doctor to develop a personalized workout routine to help you meet your goals.
Because of the link between sodium and hypertension, you will need to monitor the individual Campbell’s soup labels for the sodium content and the labels of any add-on foods you consume to insure that you stay below 2,400 mg per day, particularly if you are the 2,000 calorie plan.