Food & Drink

Low salt recipes

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Salt-shaker on its side
Quick! Throw me over your shoulder!
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What should you know about high and low quantities of salt in your recipes?

Salt is ubiquitous and it is also often invisible, two conditions that are difficult to monitor. According to some statistics, people who avoid adding salt at the table may still manage to consume as much as 3,000-4,000 mg daily without even knowing it. Low salt recipes have come to the rescue, as lowered sodium is a favored condition to a myriad of medical problems ranging from liver disease and congestive heart failure to hypertension and high blood pressure, just to name a few.

Becoming accustomed to the taste of food with little or no salt may take a little time, but with dedication and commitment, it will come. If you are going to live a life via low salt recipes, you will need to avoid almost all canned vegetables and prepared foods like chili, packaged mixes of all kinds, frozen prepared meals and entrees. When training yourself to think about low salt recipes, allow an hour or two to wander up and down the aisles of your local supermarket, picking out items you would normally buy. Read the labels and check different brands of the same type of food that may contain less sodium. In general, educate yourself about every food you put in your mouth, as that will change everything about your new perspective without you even doing anything else.

What are some foods to include and avoid for low salt recipes?

Fortunately, there are many foods that are low in sodium and good for low salt recipes. They include: fruit, fresh and frozen vegetables, pasta and noodles and rice. Meats, milk, cheese and condiments such as mayonnaise, salad dressings and mustard, as well as bread and other baked goods have moderate amount of sodium and should be chosen carefully. For low salt recipes, avoid like the plague: canned vegetables, soups, meats, most processed foods, frozen entrees and packaged mixes.

Some tips to remember when preparing and serving low salt recipes

1- Do not use salt at the table.

If you have to get up from your comfortable dining room chair with a plate of steaming food in front of you and go into another room to get the salt, chances are, you will not do it.

2- Reduce by half the amount of salt indicated in recipes.

Many cakes and desserts do not need any salt at all.

3- Replace salt with herbs and spices for flavoring meats and vegetables.

4- Avoid salty foods such as processed meat and fish, soy sauce, salted nuts, chips and other snacks.

5- Get in the habit of checking every food label before you buy or use a product.

Consider this law-salt recipe for a creamy asparagus soup that comes from the Mayo Clinic. It contains no more than 140 mg of sodium per serving. You can substitute broccoli for asparagus, if desired.


  2 cups potatoes, peeled and diced
  pound fresh asparagus, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
  1/2 cup chopped onion
  2 stalks celery, chopped
  4 cups water
  2 tablespoons butter
  1/2 cup whole-wheat (whole-meal) flour
  1 1/2 cups fat-free milk
  Lemon zest, to taste
  Cracked black pepper, to taste


In a large soup pot over high heat, combine the potatoes, asparagus, onions, celery and water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for about 15 minutes,until the vegetables are tender. Stir in the butter.

In a small bowl, whisk together the flour and milk. Pour the mixture slowly into the soup pot, stirring constantly. Increase the heat to medium high and continue to stir until the soup thickens, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Season with lemon zest and cracked black pepper to taste. Serve in warmed bowls.

Always notice sodium and portion size information. Whether your goal is to make a low salt recipe of chicken soup or a three-course meal, healthy and delicious recipes abound on the Internet and awareness comes with time and experience, just as any good education. Take the time to research sodium and the effects it has on your particular medical condition. In the long run, you are buying your health.

Is there any single investment you can think of that will benefit you and loved ones more?

Take care of yourself and throw some of that salt over your left shoulder. (It�s better off there anyway.)

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