Excess or low sodium in the body causes several health issues, including high BP, skin problems, the nervous system can be impacted badly. Typically, no one likes to go for medical check-ups regularly unless required; that’s the main reason sometimes you don’t realize that nutrients level may go down or in excess due to various reasons micronutrients level in the body fluctuates, you start facing health issues. However, it needs to be balanced for smooth functioning and good metabolism in the body.
You can’t escape sodium; it is almost everywhere, such as drinking water, vegetables, fruits, different edibles like potato chips, snacks, restaurant food. The chances are high that you are getting more sodium than your body may require, despite you not even picking up the salt shaker. More than 70% of the sodium you consume comes from the food of packaged restaurants. It makes it difficult to control the consumption of sodium since it is there in your food already.
What Can You Do To Avoid Having Excess Sodium?
You have to keep an eye on your food to prevent yourself from excess sodium. Look for products that are low in sodium. You can prefer buying low sodium foods, select packaged and cooked foods attentively. Compare the quantities by looking at labels and choose the product with the low amount of sodium each serving in the grocery stores. Various brands of the same foods will have various levels of sodium. You have to be specific while selecting fresh and frozen poultry which has not been filled with sodium. Look for specific terms like broth, sodium solution, and saline. Unseasoned fresh meats have approx 100 milligrams or less per 4 – ounce each serving.
Choose top-ups carefully. Bottled salad dressings, soy sauce, dips, ketchup, capers, mustard, pickles, jarred salsas, olives, and relish are high in sodium. Search for low sodium options in all these products. You can opt for canned vegetables tagged with no salt added and without salty sauce frozen vegetables. They will be mixed later in with additional ingredients, so you will not miss the salt.
While Shopping For Food At The Grocery Store
- Various herbs, spices, and veggies such as onion, garlic, vinegar, and citrus juices can be added to recipes instead of salt.
- Properly rinse and drain canned beans such as kidney beans, chickpeas, and vegetables. You can remove the sodium at least by 40%.
- It’s a good idea to mix reduced-sodium options of food with usual foods. If you do not like the taste of lesser sodium foods, you can mix them in equal portions with the standard edition of the same diet. This way, you will get a lesser salt, and you may not notice much difference in taste. You can try this with the recipes of broths, tomato-based pasta sauces, and soups.
- Try preparing pasta, hot cereal rice without salt. You can always add different flavourful contents, so you will not lose the salt.
- Employ different cooking food methods such as grilling, searing, braising, sauteing, and roasting to bring about natural flavors, and you will not require to add salt.
- Include potassium-rich foods such as sweet potatoes, greens, tomatoes, potatoes, less sodium tomorrow sauce, kidney beans, white beans, non-fattening, yogurt, oranges, cantaloupe bananas. Potassium enables the body to reverse the effects of sodium and will help to reduce blood pressure.
When You Are Preparing Food
- You can tell them in advance what kind of food you like, things you need less or not at all. Smell and taste your food a bit before adding salt; if it is less, you can mix lemon juice and pepper to add flavor, so you don’t need to add more salt to the food.
- Look out for such food words; brined, pickled, cured, smoked, broth, soy sauce, barbecued, miso, or teriyaki sauce and adjust. Such foods usually are high in sodium, and foods that are steamed, grilled, roasted, baked, and poached will have lesser sodium.
- Control portion sizes are an excellent way to reduce sodium intake in foods by cutting portion sizes, so you consume less sodium.
Is Low Sodium Food Taste Bland And Not Tasty?
Your food will taste naturally flavored if the sodium content is optimum in your diet, not too high nor significantly less. You will experience it if you start taking lesser salt, your taste buds will adjust eventually, and you will enjoy this lesser salt food.
Preference for salt is an acquired taste that can be modified. According to research, it takes about 6-8 weeks to get used to consuming foods either with lesser salt or without that. Once your body gets used to this new habit of taking reduced salt intake, it can be difficult for you to have potato chips due to being excessively salty.
What Are The Substitutes For Salt?
Several salt substitutes are available on the market, and some of them replace sodium with potassium. On average, this change goes well with almost all but in certain medical conditions such as kidney disorder, and medications have implications on potassium intake. You have to consult with your healthcare experts regarding alternatives to salt.
You can utilize many herbs, spices, and different ingredients to add a blast of flavor to your dishes.
Garlic: an aromatic spice that improves flavor without increasing sodium quantity.
Cutting back on the salt and double amount of garlic in dishes for marinades and tomato sauces. The taste of garlic is delicious in stir-fries and soups as well.
Lemon juice: Specifically, lemon juice and zest make an excellent substitute for salt in some recipes. Lemon juice acts similarly to salt by bringing out the flavors of a recipe. Citrus can be sprinkled with overcooked vegetables and used in salad dressings and marinades for fish and meat.
Ground black pepper: Pepper and salt are a great combination. If you are looking to reduce salt, black pepper is a fantastic choice.
Dill: The fresh flavor of dill, with a pinch of fennel and celery, makes it a tasty salt substitute. Dill is a particularly excellent alternative in fish, potatoes, cucumbers recipes.
Dried onion powder, nutritional yeast, balsamic vinegar, smoked paprika are different alternatives to sodium.
Looking at all the options, undoubtedly, many great options are available as a salt substitute. Utilizing these tips of flavourful options, you can cook healthy and tasty meals.