Why TikTok Is So Divided Over Trader Joe's Teriyaki Chicken

Trader Joe's is more than a supermarket, it's a place where foodie dreams come true. The grocer is the perfect place for people who prioritize convenience, affordability, and nutrition. You can find many healthy options at TJ's, from salad dressings to chopped veggies, and frozen dishes that are high in protein, like its BBQ teriyaki chicken. TikTok user Sara Guerra recommends this meal for its 31 grams of protein per serving.

According to the store website, this is a fully cooked dark chicken meat marinated BBQ style, that comes with small bags of soy sauce. After being topped with sauce and heated in the microwave, this one is ready to eat. The TikToker, a self-proclaimed health coach and weightlifter, captioned her video, "for my ladies trying to hit their protein." 

Although the video has garnered 34,400 likes so far, many users were complaining about the elevated number of other ingredients in this Trader Joe's chicken. Some pointed out that the cholesterol and sugar were "wild" with 135 mg and 10 g respectively. But, the main concern was the amount of sodium, as one user stated "The sodium is through the roof." The bag shows 710 mg per serving.

High sodium levels has TikTok unsure about TJ's BBQ Teriyaki Chicken

The OP replied to many concerned users, saying that the sodium level depends on how mindful the person is throughout the rest of the day, especially for someone like her who lifts weights. As Muscle&Fitness notes, a bodybuilder needs more sodium because of how much they sweat. The TikToker also highlighted the lack of awareness on the subject of sodium intake, as up to 90% of Americans consume too much salt (via Medical News Today). TJ's teriyaki chicken probably isn't the meal you should worry about, however, as there are other dishes that have tons of salt, including many packaged and canned goods. 

So, what happens if you eat too much salt one day? Healthline suggests drinking lots of water, going for a walk, having homemade food for your next meal, and eating foods rich in potassium like fruits, veggies, nuts, or yogurt.

When it comes to Trader Joe's BBQ chicken, some of the commenters offered up the advice of only using one package of the sauce if you're worried about the salt. Someone recommended having it with some chopped zucchini and squash for a more fulfilling dinner — and yes, you can get your veggies at Trader Joe's, too.