If you’re planning on ordering Subway for lunch, but need to keep a check on your sodium levels, what are the best choices you should pick? We’ve found the top 14 lowest sodium options in Subway…
What Counts as Low Sodium?
I’m guessing as you’re reading this you’ve already got a good idea of how much sodium you should be sticking to a day – you might even have a level from your doctor, in which case whatever they’ve told you usurps anything I might say here.
But, if you don’t have a prescribed level and are just trying to stick with a low sodium diet for general health reasons, it’s suggested that we generally consume less than 2300mg a day – and closer to 1500mg is preferred by the American Heart Association.
A food is classed as very low sodium if it contains less than 35mg of sodium, and low sodium if it contains less than 140mg – but, meals are made up of more than one foiod so, what does this mean you should aim for in a meal?
Well, a good rule of thumb is somewhere between 500 and 700mg a meal – which allows a little bit extra for snacks.
The Absolute Lowest Sodium Item in Subway Is…
It’s the Veggie Delite Salad which has just 75mg of sodium – and an extra 30mg if you top it with Swiss Cheese and an Oil or Oil and Vinegar Dressing.
Admittedly, this is also a very low-calorie meal so you’re going to need to add some extra protein, or low-sodium carbs, to it to bulk it out so you’re not hungry later in the day.
Or you could pick one of our other low-sodium Subway Choices.
What’s The Lowest Sodium Sub in Subway?
As you probably know, some of the main contributors to sodium levels in our diet are bread and processed meats, so, you do need to pick your subs choices carefully at Subway.
The best choice is a 6-inch Veggie Delite which has just 320mg of sodium.
This is also the sub that’s lowest in fat and sodium in Subway. It has zero saturated fat.
Other Low(ish) Sodium Subs to Consider
If you don’t feel like a veggie sub what else can you order. Well, unfortunately, things do jump up quite a lot and most of the other choices do take you over the 700g limit, but remember, you can offset these by choosing wisely the rest of your day. Or, keep reading to find some ways to keep your choice low – and to find some other low-sodium choices.
Five Other Low(ish) Sodium Subs at Subway
|Total for a Sub (without cheese/sauce)
|Rotisserie Style Chicken
|Oven Roasted Turkey
|Sweet Onion Chicken Teriyaki
Admittedly, the Subway nutritional information is a bit lacking in exact detail here – it doesn’t say which bread those are in, whether there’s cheese (I’m thinking not), exactly which veggies it has – or allow for condiments.
Make the wrong choices here and you could still end up with a sodium-packed parcel – so, here’s what you need to know to make sure you’re picking the right choice…
How to Keep Sodium Low at Subway
Pick The Lowest Sodium Bread
The lowest sodium bread in Subway is the Hearty Multigrain Bread which has 310mg of sodium in a 6-inch serving.
Other okay choices would be the 6-inch Italian which has 350mg or the Artisan Flatbread which has 360mg, but the Multigrain also has more fiber so it’s a win-win.
Are Subway Wraps Healthier than the Bread?
Not when it comes to sodium content no.
The wraps are the highest sodium options in Subway – they actually contain over double the sodium.
A healthy-sounding Spinach Wrap has 780mg of the stuff! The first rule of making good choices in Subway, skip the wraps if you’re watching your sodium.
Which Cheese to Pick?
Grated Parmesan and Swiss are the stand-out choices – both have under 30mg a serving.
Admittedly, these options aren’t available at every Subway, so of the most commonly carried cheeses, your best choice would be Monterey at 85g of sodium a serving – depending on your topping (and how much you like cheese!), you might want to leave that off.
The highest sodium option is the American at 210mg a serving.
Any Veggies to Avoid?
Generally, the best thing you can do in Subway is pile on the veggies. Go to town on cucumbers,, green peppers, lettuce, onions, tomato, sliced avocado, and baby spinach as these are all sodium-free or at least extremely low, and they supply important potassium.
A few of the other veggies though you need to watch out for -particularly the pickles
The Lowest Sodium Condiment
Pick the wrong one of these (Franks Buffalo Sauce) and you could add 350mg of sodium to your sandwich, doubling its numbers.
Instead, play it safe and choose Oil, Oil and Vinegar, or Red Wine Vinegar which all contain zero sodium. Yellow Mustard is also an okay option as it has just 10mg – and might go better on a sub.
The Lowest Sodium Salad in Subway
Bread is one of the main contributors to the sodium level in Subway so by picking a salad you immediately open up your lower-sodium options.
The lowest sodium salad in Subway is again, the Veggie Delite which has just 75mg of sodium (before you add cheese or a dressing) – but, this is also very low in calories and unlikely to keep you full for the afternoon so, so you’re going to want to add some protein from somewhere.
You might, therefore, want to pick one of these choices instead – or, bring a low-sodium topping from home.
|Rotisserie Style Chicken
|Oven Roasted Turkey
|Black Forest Ham
Oh, and while you’d think that anything on a salad would be an okay choice, some of the salads contain more sodium than the lower sodium subs – avoid the Buffalo Chicken, Spicy Italian and Chicken and Bacon Ranch which all top 1000mg a serving.
The Salads and No Bready Bowls are the best choices in Subway if you’re avoiding gluten – although, check our guide to gluten-free Subway to see more about what to be careful about.
The Lowest Sodium No Bready Bowl
These used to be known as Protein Bowls and they differ from the salads in that they include a larger portion of protein.
This is more likely to keep you full, but, because processed meats are another common source of sodium in the diet, it does reduce your options…
In fact, the only one that fits under our 700mg cut-off is the Tuna No Bready Bowl.
Lowest Sodium Soups
Soup is another common place you’ll find a lot of sodium, and the ones at Subway are no exception.
The lowest sodium soup at Subway is the Beef Chilli with Beans, but it still contains 810mg per serving.
The other sides in Subway are of the potato chip variety – and I’m guessing we don’t need to tell you that these are going to send your sodium levels above that healthy cut-off.
The Cookies have lower sodium levels, but they do contain sugar and fat so, also possibly aren’t the choice your doctor would have you make!
If you need to increase the volume of your meal in Subway, you’re better off adding an extra Veggie Delite Salad than going for the sides.
So, there you have it, the best choices to order in Subway if you’re watching your sodium. If your favorite isn’t listed, then you’ll find a full list of the sodium content in Subway meals in their nutritional information.
If you have any more questions, pop them in the comments and I’ll do my best to help you out.
What to Read Next
We’re starting to cover more low-sodium options on the blog, so if you’re looking for other ways to eat out while watching your sodium you might want to start with our post on the healthiest low-sodium choices in Olive Garden. It explains what to pick if you’re just watching your salt intake – but also, what the healthiest choices are if you’re also counting calories, limiting saturated fat, or skipping gluten or meat.
Who is The Wellness Nerd?
My name is Helen Foster, and I’m a health journalist and wellness author. Publications I’ve written for include Women’s Health, Reader’s Digest, Body and Soul, Good Health at the Daily Mail, and more. I have also written 16 books on health and nutrition.