J Nutr Health.  2020 Dec;53(6):663-675. 10.4163/jnh.2020.53.6.663.

Comparison of the sodium content of Korean soup-based dishes prepared at home, restaurants, and schools in Seoul

  • 1Department of Foods and Nutrition, Kookmin University, Seoul 02707, Korea
  • 2Department of Food and Nutrition, Seoul National University, Seoul 08826, Korea


The aim of this study was to measure the sodium content of the solid and liquid components of soup-based dishes (SBD) including Korean soup, stew, noodle/dumplings, and watery kimchi and to compare the sodium content in the dishes from home, schools, and restaurants in Seoul.
The dishes were divided into 3 groups, namely home, restaurant and school food. We separated the dishes into solid and liquid to measure the weight, salinity, and sodium content. The sodium content of the dishes was analyzed using inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectrometry.
The proportion of sodium content in the liquid component of SBD were 65.2%– 66.7% in soup, 49.8%–61.2% in stew, 48.7%–56.7% in noodle/dumpling, and 43.7%–73.2% in watery kimchi. The sodium content per 100 g of the whole dishes of the same kind from the schools was significantly lower than that from the restaurants and home. However, there was no significant difference in sodium content per 100 g of whole dishes between the restaurants and home. The sodium content per 100 g of liquid in the same kind of dishes from the schools was significantly lower than those from the restaurants and home, and that from home was significantly lower than from the restaurants.
The sodium content of the liquid in SBD accounted for at least about half of the total sodium content of the whole dishes. It is important to establish a separate database with the sodium content in the solid and liquid portions of SBD and to evaluate how much liquid and/or solid would be consumed to estimate individual sodium intake more accurately. Also, it should be noted that the sodium content varies with the origin of the dishes, whether dishes were from home, restaurants, or schools.


sodium; soup; liquid; school; restaurant
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